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Waterloo School Board OKs referendum details, costs

December 29, 2018

WATERLOO -- The review of a schematic budget and how it relates to the approved $16.2 million Waterloo School District referendum was discussed and approved by the board during a recent meeting.

The first approved referendum question relates to $7.3 million in facilities upgrades and will include student parking renovations and storm water updates, 168,000 square feet of roof improvements, window upgrades, security and door upgrades, heating, ventilation and air conditioning upgrades, elementary restroom renovations and expansions, the renovation of 14 multi- and eight individual restroom areas, gymnasium and pool locker room shower and restroom upgrades, design fees and furniture, fixtures and equipment costs.

The second approved referendum question relates to $8.9 million facilities building project and will include a three station gymnasium with storage, locker rooms and restrooms, a fitness center addition, a commons and café addition, site work and design costs.

Kraemer Brothers of Plain was hired in November 2017 for construction management services for projects related to the $16.2 million referendum. The firm is an independent construction management business and no restrictions or exclusions are set for subcontractors during the bidding process. By being independent, lower bid and costs are made available to school districts and lower overhead equals lower fees, according to the company.

During the January 2018 regular school board meeting, FEH Design was approved for architectural services related to the $16.2 million referendum.

“Our job is to price what we see here and to project what we think is going to be in there,” Greg Callin, vice president of client services for Kraemer Brothers said in regards to the schematic budget.

Callin reviewed site development, general construction, mechanical/electrical and miscellaneous/equipment costs outlined in the schematic budget with the board during the meeting.

A total site development cost of $1,600,000 would include site layout and engineering; soil compaction and testing; grading, earthwork and site utilities; asphalt paving and base course; concrete walks; paving, stoops, approaches, curbs and gutters; seeding, sodding and planting; a retaining wall and railing; lawn irrigation and site utilities that would include storm, sanitary and water and lighting.

A total general construction cost of $7,525,000 would include general inspection and supervision, temporary utilities, enclosures, barricades, cleaning and testing; special inspections, cranes, pumps and hoisting; building demolition, concrete foundations, rain, steel, excavation and backfill, concrete floors and miscellaneous interior concrete, architectural precast wall panels and plank and concrete toppings.

Masonry, structural steel and miscellaneous steel, carpentry, metal panel siding, roofing steel metal and blocking, caulking and sealants, doors and frames, wood doors and finish hardware, aluminum entrances, windows, a curtainwall system and glazing, the replacement of single pane windows and interior door hardware, steel studs, drywall and insulation, ceramic floor tile and base, resilient flooring, rubber flooring and base, carpeting, wood gymnasium flooring, terrazzo floor patching, acoustic ceilings, painting and miscellaneous/specialties items are also included in the total general construction cost of $7,525,000.

Mechanical/electrical costs would equal $4,460,000 and would include plumbing, electrical, fire protection systems, HVAC units and HVAC controls and the replacement of old/damaged roof vents.

Miscellaneous and equipment costs would equal $875,000 and would include finish carpentry, casework and millwork, display cases, coiling grille at concessions, toilet partitions and accessories, lockers, concessions room equipment, gymnasium equipment and backboards, telescoping bleachers, audio visual equipment, a folding panel partition, safety wages and equipment, final building cleaning, performance and payment bonds, builder’s risk insurance and building permits.

A construction contingency fee of $350,000 and a construction fee of $255,000 are also outlined in the schematic budget.

A total schematic budget of $15,065,000, architectural fees of $1,020,000 and Waterloo School District soft costs of $115,000 brought the overall schematic budget total to $16,200,000.

“Our hope and goal is that we’ve been conservative in our budgeting and that the pure competition on the bid day will hopefully drive some savings,” Callin said.

Six alternate items that were presented during the meeting included the addition of a pool observation deck at a cost of $100,000, the addition of cooling to the metal and wood shops at a cost of $100,000, the addition of brick veneer to the inside of the commons area at a cost of $45,000, the changing of the gymnasium’s conventional steel structure to a barrel-shaped structure at a cost of $40,000, the replacement of heating coil in the elementary school gymnasium at a cost of $20,000 and pool building patchwork at a cost of $10,000.

The board did not take any action or make any decisions regarding the alternate items presented during the meeting.

The board also discussed a number of items that could possibly reduce the overall cost of the $16.2 million referendum.

The replacement of 1,420 square feet of translucent panels with 520 square feet of punched openings could save $50,000 and the elimination of the multi-purpose room from the fitness center would save $130,000. Additional items also discussed were the elimination of the fitness center canopy with a savings cost of $35,000, the elimination of the middle school entrance canopy with a savings cost of $30,000 and the elimination of the commons entrance canopy with a savings cost of $30,000.

The board gave district administrator Brian Henning the authority to make a decision regarding the $50,000 cost savings related to the translucent panel replacement after further discussions with FEH Design architects have taken place.

The board did not make any additional decisions regarding the other reduction items discussed during the meeting.

With the exception of Area 3 Director Jeni Quimby, all school board members were present. The next regular meeting will be held Jan. 14, 2019, at 6:30 p.m. in the high school library.

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