North / South America
Tile vs Asphalt for skating rink, argument heads to court
Jul, 18 2012
(BERNARDS, New Jersey) -- When public debate and letters to the editor fail, sue ’em.
A township resident is seeking a court order to stop officials from awarding a six-figure contract to resurface an outdoor roller-skating rink.
Officials closed the rink at Harry Dunham Park on Somerville Road in 2010 because it was prone to cracking and flooding.
Since then, bids from contractors have repeatedly come in over budget, which was increased last year to $175,000 from the original $125,000.
The project, meanwhile, has become a cause for both the local Tea Party and Douglas Wicks, a good-government activist who insists the rink can be resurfaced with plastic tiles, which are more affordable to buy and install than asphalt.
As part of a lawsuit filed in April in Superior Court in Somerville, Wicks is seeking a court order to prevent the township from accepting or awarding any bids received by the bidding deadline last Tuesday.
Wicks’ motion asks the judge to direct the township to rebid the project, specifying the use of plastic tiles as an alternative to asphalt — or else have the town conduct a comprehensive study to determine whether the tile system would work.
The tiles have been used in skating rinks in Green Brook since 2009 and Long Branch since 2008.
IceCourt, a manufacturer of such outdoor surface tiles, said their product can be placed on existing and cracked asphalt surfaces. The tiles are supposed to expand and contract to account for weather and temperature changes.
In court papers, Township Engineer Thomas Timko argues that the tiles would allow water to seep through and damage the existing surface and base layers. He said that tiles are unstable, can be cracked by rough players and require daily maintenance and inspection.
Wicks says Timko’s arguments are “based on information that is inaccurate and misleading.”
“The proposed tiles are not the functional equivalent of asphalt,” Timko answered in previous court filings. “Wicks is not an engineer. His insistence on the tiles for the rink is improper and would result in an inferior facility.”
Hanley Wood LLC, the premier media, event, information and strategic marketing services company serving the construction industry and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) announced today a strategic partnership whereby Hanley Wood has acquired the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo. More
SMC to spend $750M for 3 cement plants. More