Business Administrator Lynn Shugars said the project is going “very well.”
“The weather has been cooperating and our contractors, architects, construction managers and facilities manager have been doing a great job of coordinating efforts and staying on top of things,” Shugars said.
The project includes the renovation, repair, retrofitting, replacement and rehabilitation of building systems and site improvements at six facilities, including new roofs, HVAC systems, security enhancements and curriculum-related technology upgrades.
The state promised $13.7 million in funding for that portion of the project.
In addition to work being done to the school buildings, the district is replacing the main stadium field at the high school with synthetic turf, resurfacing the running track, constructing a new stadium entrance, and putting up a new scoreboard and lighting, along with dugouts at the varsity fields for baseball and softball. Garrison Architects of Bellmawr provided all stadium and school designs.
“What the students will probably notice the most is the security vestibules at each school entrance, security cameras throughout the school buildings, some new bathrooms at Mary E. Roberts and South Valley (schools), and new tile in classrooms at the Upper Elementary School,” Shugars said. “The high school and middle school students will also get to see the stadium project evolve until its Oct. 16 completion date.”
Rob Notley, of New Road Construction, the district’s construction manager, said the work is on schedule, with most of it to be completed by the start of school Sept. 8.
“There are also some infrastructure improvements; HVAC upgrades at Baker, Mary Roberts and South Valley; and data and tech upgrades at all six schools will continue on an after-hours basis into the fall,” Notley said.
Additionally, some of the project will need to be completed next year.
“We do as much as we can during the summer, but it’s impossible to do it all in the 10 weeks or so that we have, and clean the buildings and get them ready for school,” Shugars said. “Some work has to be done in the summer when students and staff are not in the buildings.”
While pleased with the progress, school and construction officials said it’s not been without some hurdles.
“Coordinating work between seven separate construction work packages for various scopes of work at six schools throughout the district has been a challenge, but the coordination process has been an overall success,” Notley said.