Q & A:
District to take additional time to review, study and evaluate Sumner High School modernization project
• How and who came up with the list of projects for the 2016 Capital Projects bond?
• What was the process for evaluating needs and creating a final list of projects for the bond?
• When were cost estimates calculated for the total 2016 bond needs and also for each of the bond projects? Since that time, have there been factors that have required the District to re-evaluate project scopes and timelines?
• Was there a process to include the public when determining the 2016 bond projects?
• How does the Bond Planning Committee factor in long-range planning when, for example, determining if a school should be modernized/expanded versus replaced?
• How and who determines the order and timeline of projects?
• Are there factors that might change the originally-planned sequencing of projects?
• Why wasn’t Sumner High School placed higher on the list for planning/construction to begin?
• Why do we need upgraded middle school tracks and fields? Why were they completed before Sumner High School?
• What is the District doing right now about addressing reports of mold at Sumner High School?
• Regardless of the option and timeline the school board chooses to move forward with the Sumner High School project, will health and safety issues be fixed right now?
• What is the student capacity of Sumner High School?
• Does the current building’s capacity accommodate the current student population?
• Is there opportunity for public input on the Sumner High School project?
Revised Sumner High modernization redesign unveiled; School Board to study options
At the Nov. 19 Study Session, architects presented a revised design for the Sumner High School modernization project. Due to extraordinarily high construction costs, the District must make substantial changes from the original design that went out for bid in October.
The School Board will further examine the revised design scope, costs and timeline, and consider options and opportunities that will create a school with features and benefits our students, staff and community deserve.
At the Dec. 12 board meeting, the School Board will take action on the direction of the Sumner High School project. At that time, the District will determine next steps, which will be communicated to the public.
We promise that Sumner High School, steeped in tradition of everlasting loyalty and support, will remain the heart of the Sumner community.
Sumner High modernization project design to be revised
After construction bids came in higher than expected on the Sumner High School modernization project, the School Board authorized the District develop a revised design that still meets educational and safety needs.
An unusually high volume of construction projects in the market and other factors necessitate a revised design that will reduce costs in this construction climate, in part, by modernizing more existing space and constructing less new space. The revised design will keep these elements as promised in the 2016 capital construction bond, including:
- Safety and security improvements
- Science, music and general classroom expansion
- Commons (cafeteria) expansion
- Restroom and hallway expansion
- Modernization of existing building, including administration/student services area, library, classrooms, food service area, support spaces and building infrastructure
- Site improvements, such as parking and parent/bus drop-off lanes, and removal of portables
Another cost-savings opportunity is realized through project sequencing and an adjusted timeline. The redesign will include site work, a classroom addition and modernization, which allows for more competitive bidding among contractors and a streamlined work plan.
At this time, with a sequencing approach, the District anticipates starting work in Summer 2019 with partial completion in Fall 2020 and full completion in Fall 2021.
Sumner High School modernization project is met with delays, refined design
Last week, construction bids came in higher than expected on the Sumner High School modernization project, causing the project team to reimagine a new design with substantial cost savings.
Due to a historically-aggressive construction market steeped with high demand and costs, coupled with a complex project, the sole bid came in well over the project’s construction budget.
With a better idea of market costs, architects went back to the drawing table and created a refined and more simplified design for the Sumner High School modernization project – cutting costs by an estimated 30 percent – that still meets educational and safety needs while keeping our promise to voters in a fiscally-prudent manner.
A process is underway with the project team, including design partners, consultants, the city of Sumner and the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, to further refine the design and work toward a concept that significantly reduces costs.
A combination of the high construction market, a new design and permitting delays mean a revised project timeline. At this time, with a phased approach, the District anticipates starting work in Summer 2019 with partial completion in Fall 2020 and full completion in Fall 2021.