Progress on construction plans for Brookings-Harbor schools is on time and on budget, with requests for bids expected to go out in March, officials said.

If all goes well, the school board will likely approve the final bid in April with major construction work to begin after the last day of school on May 30, said District Superintendent Paul Prevenas.

Prevenas and members of the School Board Review and Oversight committee received the 95 percent construction planning documents from architect Dick Bryant last week.

The documents represent the final blueprints for new construction and remodeling at the elementary, middle and high school campuses.

The board will consider approving the documents at its Feb. 25 meeting.

The board has asked Bryant for a detailed cost estimate associated with the final plans. Prevenas said Bryant is working on that, but will not have final numbers until just a few days before the Feb. 25 meeting.

Our architect is as concerned as anybody that we make sure the cost does not exceed the amount of bond money, Prevenas said.

Brookings-Harbor residents approved a $14 million school bond in November 2000.

The construction plans call for building a small gym at Kalmiopsis Elementary School, covered walkways and a new cafeteria/multi-use room at both Azalea Middle School and Brookings-Harbor High School.

Prevenas said the only unknown at this point is how many companies will bid on the project, and at what cost.

The bid is the most important part, he said. This is when a contractor says Ill build it for this much.

See Construction, Page 2A

Prevenas and Bryant are hoping for competitive bids, but that depends on how busy contractors are and how many large-scale projects are happening elsewhere in the state.

In his presentation to the oversight committee, Bryan said the final construction documents represent a lean plan.

He presented a number of alternates, items that are nice to include in the project but the district can live without if the budget cannot afford them.

We have been very conservative and simple with the designs since day one, so there is not a very lengthy list of alternates to choose from, Bryan said.

Were scraping the bottom of the barrel to come with alternatives, which is a credit to the committees hard work and conservative approach.

Among the 10 alternates discussed, the committee wanted to:

Keep skylights in various classrooms, cafeterias and gyms.

Use the less expensive maple wood for floors instead of the suggested bamboo flooring.

Install additional basketball backboards in the elementary and middle school cafeterias.

Keep a multi-sided, multi-functional platform in the reading room of the elementary school library.

Keep folding walls that would separate the music room from the stage at the middle school.

The committee also reviewed and discussed a draft procedure manual and organizational chart written by project manager Jim Van Lent.

The manual explains who will be responsible for assigning and approving various aspects of the construction project. The chart shows the flow of information from the subcontractors to project manager to the board.

The school board will ultimately be responsible for approving the manual and chart.

Another issue discussed was at what point should the board become involved in approving any change in orders or direction in construction.

Prevenas said the board will need to designate a specific person who will be ultimately responsible for approving any changes.

Being able to deal with and approve such changes will be critical in keeping the project on schedule, he said.

For example, the board may select Prevenas, or a designated person such as Maintenance Supervisor Gene Peare, to approve any changes. Or the board may want the architect to sign off.

Additionally, the board will need to establish a threshold amount above which any change order must be approved by the board itself.

Prevenas suggested a threshold of $80,000 to $100,000.