The renovations and new construction proposed in the $39.7 million capital project that Broadalbin-Perth residents will vote on May 17 would take place over the next three-and-a-half years, starting as early as summer 2017 if the proposal is approved. However, district leaders are working with architects and engineers to develop a detailed construction schedule that would not disrupt student learning and would avoid the use of temporary classroom space.
“The key to this construction timeline is the careful use of time when school is not in session,” said Superintendent of Schools Stephen Tomlinson. “The two-month summer break would be when all of the large-scale projects inside the buildings would happen, but we would also schedule work during other school vacations, on weekends and during evenings. Our goal would be to minimize the impact of the construction work on students, staff and residents over the next several years.”
Tomlinson said that, if residents approve the capital project, the district’s first priority would be to work with architects from CSArch to try to fast track some of B-P’s urgent infrastructure needs through the New York State Education Department approval process. These needs include replacing the energy management and telephone systems, both of which are so old that it is difficult – if not impossible – for the district to obtain replacement parts.
“Our maintenance and IT teams have done an admirable job patching these essential systems to keep them running, but we can’t keep patching them without risking a complete failure of one or both systems,” Tomlinson said. “These are just two examples of the work that has to be done either as part of the capital project, which would be 80 percent paid for by state building aid, or outside of a capital project, which wouldn’t be eligible for any state aid.”
Tomlinson said he is also hoping to fast track some of the work slated to occur outside the school buildings, including addressing parking and traffic flow issues.
Construction work that requires ripping up floors or knocking down walls inside the school buildings would likely take place during the summers of 2018 and 2019. However, Tomlinson said crews could work on the planned additions and outbuildings in the afternoon and evening during the school year, minimizing noise and other distractions during the school day.
According to the construction timeline, the renovated and reorganized school buildings would open for the start of the 2019-20 school year, with students in pre-K through grade 6 attending school at the Perth campus and students in grades 7-12 attending school at the Broadalbin campus.
Residents are encouraged to learn more about the capital project proposal by visiting the district website and reviewing the special capital project newsletter that was mailed to all district households. Residents are invited to submit questions about the capital project proposal to district communications specialist Michele Kelley at firstname.lastname@example.org, or anonymously through Patriot Plain Talk.