Wednesday, January 24, 2018
News Roundup

Data center's $1 million overrun irritates Largo officials

LARGO — In May, the city staff told commissioners a new data center will cost $3.1 million to build — $1.1 million more than the original estimate. Commissioners asked them to try to cut costs.

Last week, the staff came back with a new price tag: $3 million. Still $1 million over budget.

City commissioners agree the data center is needed. It will house the city's computer servers, the backbone for everything from the police dispatch system to the city's financial management system.

The servers currently sit on the second floor of City Hall, which might not survive a Category 1 hurricane. The new 3,000-square-foot data center should be able to withstand winds from a Category 5 hurricane.

However, commissioners are still a little ticked that the estimate was so far off. The architects led a PowerPoint presentation at Tuesday night's work session.

"What happened with our estimating?" Mayor

Pat Gerard later asked.

Assistant City Manager Henry Schubert said the comparison projects the staff used to develop the $2 million estimate were a few years old and apparently outdated.

The data center is being paid for with revenue from the Penny for Pinellas, a countywide sales tax used only for capital projects like Largo's new Highland Recreation Complex. So while the extra $1 million cost will not impact city spending in areas like police and fire rescue, it will affect what the city has left to spend on other capital improvements, like updating old facilities or building sidewalks.

Schubert assured commissioners that the penny tax revenue Largo is projected to receive can cover the extra $1 million, but that didn't allay Gerard's concerns.

"Not that we can do a whole lot about it now, but yeah, that bothers me, because it does impact what else we're going to be able to do," Gerard said.

The data center will be built at the southwest corner of the city library property, on part of the library's parking lot, near Central Park Drive. Construction is scheduled to begin early next year and finish by November 2013.

Commissioner Curtis Holmes asked the project architects if putting the building underground instead would save money, since designing it to withstand severe winds would not be necessary. The architects answered that, while the land near the library is high from an elevation standpoint, an underground data center would still be flood-prone.

Commissioner Harriet Crozier chided Holmes for even bringing up the idea.

"It was just a thought," he said.

Will Hobson can be reached at (727) 445-4167 or [email protected]

Comments
The Daystarter: Prepare for Carmageddon II in Tampa; own a piece of St. Pete history; and yeah a bunch more stories about Gasparilla

The Daystarter: Prepare for Carmageddon II in Tampa; own a piece of St. Pete history; and yeah a bunch more stories about Gasparilla

Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what you need to know today.• It’s jacket weather this morning, but temperatures should warm up pleasantly, to the upper 60s, according to 10Weather WTSP. And we’re tracking the weather ahead of Gasparill...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Changing the shape of food

Changing the shape of food

Diners began with a warm hand towel sprayed lightly with a subtle lavender fragrance, a way to wake up the palate. From there, guests were presented with a white enamel spoon, an "amuse bouche" of blood orange sorbet, sweet and tangy.This was not lun...
Updated: 11 hours ago
Dan Ruth: Autopsy On A Stick? Six Feet Under Souffle? Welcome to the state fair!

Dan Ruth: Autopsy On A Stick? Six Feet Under Souffle? Welcome to the state fair!

Well it’s that time of year again, the arrival of the Florida State Fair, or as it might otherwise be known — the yearly gastronomical death march.As always, the fair, which runs from Feb. 8-19, will feature the usual assortment of thrill rides, carn...
Published: 01/24/18
Real, homemade lasagna is worth every minute of your time in the kitchen

Real, homemade lasagna is worth every minute of your time in the kitchen

I grew up on my mom’s lasagna alla Bolognese, composed of emerald green spinach noodles layered with robust ground meat sauce and creamy bechamel. To many Italian food lovers, this is the ideal against which all others are measured. But the world of ...
Published: 01/24/18
Lightning beats Predators in overtime

Lightning beats Predators in overtime

NASHVILLE — Steven Stamkos’ celebration said it all.The Lightning captain delivered an emphatic fist pump after his rocket one-timer clanked in off the crossbar, tying the score with just over two minutes left at Bridgestone Arena on Tuesday night. T...
Updated: 5 hours ago

High school scoreboard for Jan. 23

Tuesday’s scoreboardBoys basketballBoca Ciega 55, Canterbury 53Girls basketballBoca Ciega 65, Largo 19
Updated: 6 hours ago

Hernando sheriff: Shooter injures three; in standoff with SWAT

BROOKSVILLE — A shooter was on the loose Tuesday night after injuring three victims, according to Hernando Sheriff Al Nienhuis.The sheriff would not say if there were any fatalities.The Sheriff’s Office received a report about the at about 9 p.m. Dep...
Updated: 6 hours ago

Updated: 6 hours ago
Sheriff: Pasco man planned, then carried out neighbor’s execution

Sheriff: Pasco man planned, then carried out neighbor’s execution

HOLIDAY — A neighborhood dispute ended in gunfire when one neighbor executed another on Tuesday, deputies said, as the victim kneeled in his own front yard begging for his life.The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office said the execution, which took place ju...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Career Q&A: Sharpen interview skills to overcome impression of shyness

Career Q&A: Sharpen interview skills to overcome impression of shyness

Q: At the end of a recent interview, the manager told me that I would not be getting the job. He said I wasn’t a good fit for the position because I was shy. As a naturally introverted person, I found this very discouraging. How can I avoid similar p...
Updated: 8 hours ago