Bristol, Va., school leaders excited about progress on new central office
Bristol, Va., school leaders excited about progress on new central office -Bristol Herald Courier, October 04, 2011
by David Mcgee
BRISTOL, Va. –
School leaders behaved more like school children Monday, excitedly touring their future central office.
“Can we peek in?” School Board member Beth Rhinehart asked after being told they couldn’t walk on the just-coated flooring in the board’s future meeting room. Raising the heavy-duty plastic coating that covered one opening, officials were startled at how much renovation work has already been accomplished inside the former Central Warehouse building.
“Good day, look at that,” school Superintendent Mark Lineburg exclaimed, looking for the first time at the shiny polyurethane coating on one section of flooring. Board members toured the facility for the second time in a month Monday afternoon, before the regular monthly meeting.
All expressed satisfaction with the extensive work already done to sandblast old wooden columns and brick inside the 100-year-old building and the amount of construction that has occurred in less than three months since contractors began.
“This will be the most unique school board office in the state, maybe the country,” board Chairman Ronald Cameron said while walking out. “I think it’s fantastic. I’m very pleased with the progress.”
The $3 million project is on schedule, Lineburg said, in part because contractors have worked long hours and weekends to revitalize the former commercial warehouse space at the corner of Lee and Scott streets. The project is expected to be finished in May or June 2012, with officials occupying their new offices before classes resume in August.
Once the board convened, members unanimously approved the $162,800 low bid for a revised ramp for the disabled at Virginia High School. Trademark Construction of Bristol, Va., was the low second-round bidder after the initial bids came in at about twice the projected cost. New bids were opened Monday afternoon and the local firm’s approval is pending legal and professional review. Board members voted to formally reject those initial bids.
Bill King of architectural firm Thompson & Litton said the project was redesigned to bring the costs down.