As classes begin, renovations continue at Salamanca schools

The site work at Prospect Elementary School is only a small fraction of what's happening in the ongoing capital project in the Salamanca City Central School District.

SALAMANCA — When teachers and students in the Salamanca City Central School District walked down the halls on the first day of class Tuesday, many saw hints of the construction work happening on the district’s two campuses.

The current capital improvement project in the district has been ongoing for nearly 10 months, and the first completed sections are expected to be unveiled and ready for use within several weeks.

In the meantime, work at Prospect Elementary, Seneca Intermediate and the high schools continue daily as the 2019-20 school year begins.

At the Board of Education’s regular meeting Aug. 27, representatives from Turner Construction and HUNT AES updated the district on the status of the first two phases of the project — including potential completion dates for new spaces — as well as the status of early designs for the third phase of the project, most notably concerning Veterans Memorial Park.

Julian Schnopp, of Turner, said the Seneca offices addition is nearing completion. Windows were expected to be delivered this week with installation beginning soon after and putting down flooring is also coming soon.

“Ceiling work is ongoing,” he said. “We have ceiling tile delivery this week, so we’ll start dropping ceiling tiles in that space as well.”

Also in Seneca, the new multipurpose space will be seeing work throughout the fall, starting with underground utility work. Schnopp said in the coming months, crews will start framing out the walls and fit out the new serving area.

Roof work is also ongoing at Seneca and the high school, which will have fewer crews up there as school begins with just detail work left to complete.

“The sheet metal work will start to cover up the rubber flaps that you see hanging over the edge of the building,” he said.

At the STEAM addition in the high school, Schnopp said metal rain screen panels are being installed between the brickwork and can be seen when driving on Front Avenue. He said the polished concrete floor work was expected to begin sometime this week.

“Wall and floor tile are scheduled to start next week,” he said. Some work on the floors already begin where the existing hallways connect to the new addition, he added.

The Seneca office is scheduled for completion Sept. 21, with the STEAM addition scheduled for Oct. 11, Schnopp said. He said the bus garage and high school roof replacements are nearly complete with just fine-tuning work going throughout September.

AT PROSPECT Elementary, Jim Templeton, of Turner, said crews have been busy working on the new main office in the former library and computer lab space at the front of the building. He said the demolition is wrapped up and unforeseen abatement taken care of.

“The hallways get reconfigured as part of this project,” he said. “The hallway that’s between the old library area and the new mechanical room area now will be the entrance to the new library. The new hallway cuts through the main office renovation area.”

Piping for the new bathrooms in the offices, above ceiling work and the wall layout for the office are scheduled for September, Templeton said. He said work on the parking lot was also expected to be finished by the start of school.

“Any areas that aren’t buttoned up will be clearly fenced off and protected from the kids,” he added. Other site work includes a playground installation, some fencing and structure replacements in the parking lot.

Templeton said the main office is expected to be completed by late November or early December, which will be followed by work beginning in the old office space for renovating the new library.

Concerning the new heating and cooling system, that installation is expected to be completed by the beginning of next summer, Templeton said.

HUNT representative Jeff Robbins then reviewed the five bid packages for Phase III of the project. Bid Package I, which is Main Campus site and roof work, is expected to be bid out in November.

Bid Package 2, which concerns the Veterans Memorial Park site work, and is expected to be submitted for approval in September with bidding to go out in December, Robbins said.

Bid Package 3, which is for the Vets Park buildings, is expected to be submitted around the same time as 2, but is separate in case approval of one takes longer than the other so bidding out the work can happen sooner, Robbins said.

“A goal would be to bid these together, but we didn’t want the site work to be held up because of the buildings,” he said.

Bid Package 4, which is the Main Campus additions and alterations, will have its first design meetings this month with submission to the state not for several more months. Bid Package 5, which is for Prospect, would not have its first design meetings until October.

A page-turn meeting, where the architects and engineers would go through each drawing with the board members showing what work is being done in a lot more detail, was also in the works for this month.

(Contact managing editor Kellen M. Quigley at kquigleysp@gmail.com)