City Seeking Contractor For Foster Homes

Terry Levin, (312) 744-9277

Bids are being sought by the Public Building Commission from contractors interested in constructing six houses throughout Chicago that would be used as residences for foster children under Mayor Richard M. Daley’s “Safe Homes for Kids” program.

The PBC has been advertising for bids on this work and will hold a pre-bid meeting Monday to answer questions from potential bidders on this project.

Since most buildings constructed by the PBC are large municipal structures-such as police stations, fire houses and branch libraries-the agency hopes to attract a wider selection of bidders from among those who specialize in single-family home construction, according to PBC executive director Eileen Carey.

“There are contractors who may not be interested in working on a major municipal building, but who might jump at the chance to become involved in this unique project,” Carey said. “They are the ones we are trying to attract as potential bidders.

The job would involve building six 2,500-square-foot houses, each in a different community. The three-story buildings, being constructed by the PBC for the Chicago Department of Housing, are all designed with the same floor plan to comfortably accommodate a group of children and their foster parents.

Daley initiated the pilot program, believed the first of its kind in the nation, to help foster children cope with the most common problem they face, “growing up in an uncertain environment lacking the stable, reliable social fabric the rest of us take for granted.”

Another goal of the program is to keep large sibling groups of foster children together as a family unit, instead of being separated into different families.

The pre-bid meeting is scheduled for Monday at 10 a.m. on the second floor of the Daley Center, 66 W. Washington St.