Archive for Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Board updated on status of school projects

Gordon Kimble, (middle) of Horst, Terrill and Karst Architects, holds a core sample of the concrete floor slab of Glenwood Ridge Elementary School's new addition Monday while school board members look on. HTK revealed that the concrete slab may have been completed below par.

Gordon Kimble, (middle) of Horst, Terrill and Karst Architects, holds a core sample of the concrete floor slab of Glenwood Ridge Elementary School's new addition Monday while school board members look on. HTK revealed that the concrete slab may have been completed below par.

August 13, 2008

With the new school year starting this week, the Basehor-Linwood School Board took a tour of the district to check up on the different construction projects in progress before the regular school board meeting Monday evening.

Soccer field

Foxtails, crab grass and various other weeds peek through the grass of the new soccer field just west of Basehor-Linwood High School. Mark Franzen, with Horst, Terrill and Karst Architects said those weeds are scheduled to the sprayed in order for the grass to continue growing and forming into a field that will be ready to play on this fall.

The necessary elements, including the irrigation system, a drinking-water hydrant for players, bleachers, lights, a scoreboard and a sidewalk with access to the bleachers have been installed at the district's newest competition field. Franzen also pointed out that while it is not in the budget right now, practice baseball, softball and soccer fields will be added in the future to round out the complex.

"It's going to be nice," he said to board members. "I know it looks rough right now."

"This has the chance to be a very nice complex," board member Pat Jeannin said.

Glenwood Ridge Elementary School

Unfortunately, good news was not the topic of discussion over at the construction site for the new addition to Glenwood Ridge Elementary School.

Franzen and Gordon Kimble, also with HTK, said it was questionable whether the concrete slab poured for the floor of the addition was done correctly.

The first problem was with the reinforcement wire mesh that is supposed to be positioned in the center of the slab. If the mesh is too close to the bottom, it may not provide adequate support to the slab. If it's too close to the top, rusting may occur. Kimble said they specified that they wanted a metal support or concrete bricks placed under the mesh before the slab was poured to ensure it was in the middle, but it was not done that way. Core samples from the slab show the mesh is not positioned in the middle.

"It was specified a certain way because we're after a certain quality and it didn't get done that way," Franzen said.

Another problem was with the vapor barrier, a thick sheet of plastic that is placed under the slab to prevent water and vapor from seeping into the concrete. Seams and tears that occur in the vapor barrier are to be taped and patched to ensure it is sealed. Franzen said that was also not done.

Kimble was on site on three different occasions, twice before the concrete was poured and once during, Franzen said, and went over a checklist of expectations each of the three visits, yet the items were never completed.

While a structural engineer has said the floor slab is most likely solid, Franzen said they want to be cautious about the work because the addition will also house a storm shelter for students and teachers and the building must maintain its integrity not only in normal conditions, but during high winds in severe weather.

A meeting with Greg Murray, the owner of Champion Builders, on Friday proved to be positive, Franzen said.

"He was very apologetic and he was willing to take the measures to make it right," Franzen said. "He said, 'if you guys want it torn out, we'll tear it out.' He is not fighting us on this."

Board members were concerned that starting over on the floor slab would set the project back, but they agreed it should be done correctly. Chris Claflin, construction supervisor for the district, also warned of the precedent they would set if they accepted work from contractors that was not completed correctly, especially because there are two other buildings in the bond issue that have not yet gone out to bid.

The consensus on Monday was that the slab would be torn out and redone at the expense of the contractors, but a special meeting was called to discuss the matter further at 5:30 p.m. Thursday.

"If we're not into it (the building) at spring break, we're not going to have a great influx of kids at semester that will change life the way it is now," Claflin said.

Linwood Elementary School

The word "OFFICE" flanked by yellow accents greeted school board members as they walked in the front entrance of Linwood Elementary School.

While the office used to be buried in the middle of the school, causing not only security concerns but confusion for first time visitors, the new office is now right inside the front door of the building, solving both concerns and providing more space for staff.

While LES principal Cindy Hiebert has already settled into her space within the office, she admitted that it was still a construction zone as workers continue to pull last-minute items together before school begins. The new office will also be home to the secretary and student check-in area, a copy room, a teacher work room and a conference room.

"The front entry is a nice modern look in the building," Franzen said. "It does what it's supposed to do and that is to promote safety and security of the entrance."

Other projects at LES, including converting the old teacher work room into a handicapped-accessible bathroom, moving the computer lab into another classroom on the south side of the building and installation of the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system in the gymnasium are also complete or near completion.

Other projects

Claflin reported during the meeting that the new third-through-fifth-grade elementary school will have a bid opening this week.

"We're waiting with bated breath to see what those numbers will be as we open envelopes," he told board members.

Franzen said the design for the new Basehor-Linwood Middle School would be at 90 percent by the end of the month. Three different color schemes for the exterior of the building were presented to board members during the meeting and they decided on a design that includes warm-toned bricks and copper and muted green metal panels.

In other action Monday night, the board:

¢ Approved, 7-0, the 2008-2009 budget.

¢ Approved, 7-0, resolution 43-63, concerning destruction of records.

¢ Approved, 7-0, the appointments of Larry Trout, Jr., BES custodian, John T. Dixon, BLMS assistant football coach, Leslie Henry, BLHS registrar, Brandon Dye, BLHS assistant football and baseball coach, Travis Fouts, BLHS assistant football coach, Brenna Leiker, BLHS food service, Angela Vlasic, GRES food service and Tim Johnson, BLHS social studies. Also approved was the resignation of Casey Quinlan, BLHS social studies.

¢ Met in executive session to discuss matters relating to a student.


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