Marathon County has selected architects and a contract manager for the upcoming regional forensic science center or, as many know it more simply as, the morgue.
The county selected Miron Construction to handle the construction management, and selected Venture to perform the architecture on the project, Deputy County Administrator Chris Holman tells City Pages.
But, Holman says, the actual bids for the construction of the project won’t happen until January.
Holman told City Pages that they typically hire a construction management firm to oversee the hiring of contractors for construction and “have some skin in the game.” The county, the construction manager and the architect work as a “three-legged stool” to oversee the project and make sure it’s built properly, he says.
The county selected Miron over Boldt Construction, even though Boldt came in with a slightly lower bid and scored slightly higher on the scoring matrix, county records show. Holman says because it was a close call, they conducted internal interviews and chose Miron based on those interviews.
The county first in 2015 floated the idea of building a regional morgue, which they are now calling a forensics science center, in order to handle the increasing number of deaths that require forensic autopsies. Those right now are costly and time-consuming, since the medical examiner and deputies need to accompany a body to Madison, Milwaukee or Fond du Lac, where the only such labs exist.
The county received interest from numerous other counties facing similar dilemmas in using the morgue, as well as parts of the UP. A morgue in Marathon County would save them time and money as well.
The morgue is expected to cost roughly $14 million, but the county is on track to receive state and federal grants to cover a lot of the costs.