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SRCS project incldes athletic, security improvements

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FORT COVINGTON - Representatives from Utica-based March Associates Architects and Planners, P.C., presented the scope of the second phase of the Salmon River Central School District’s capital project to the board of education on Monday night.

March Associates owner Christopher J. Crolius said the total cost has yet to be determined and budgets at this time are preliminary.

“This is kind of a work-in-progress,” he told the board. “We’re advancing ideas and revising them with staff.”

He showed a 16-item table to the board showing proposed construction costs, of which six items’ total was listed as “TBD” (to be determined). The six items included classroom and corridor renovations, expanded bus and maintenance bays, heating/ventilation/air conditioning (HVAC), fašade upgrades, electrical upgrades, contingency spending and the total price tag.

Of the 10 items that did have a preliminary price tag, the total was $20,730,000.

Mr. Crolius also showed a preliminary table of incidental costs, which he again emphasized was preliminary and could easily change. Items under that category include design fees, utility costs, and construction management costs. Furniture and equipment, legal and bonding services, and the total price tag were listed as TBD.

The incidental items that had an estimated cost was totalled $7,125,000.

Some of the project’s main points include turning the high school gym into a two-level structure, which will include an elevated walking track and fitness center that will be available for community use.

“I’m encouraged about the possibility of a fitness center,” Salmon River Elementary Principal Kevin Walbridge said. “We’re obsolete in the area of fitness – our athletes are suffering.”

Other renovations will include gutting and restructuring the elementary school. In the wake of the Newtown, Conn. school shooting, project planners are looking at having offices in the front and classrooms in the back. The project would also add a check-in system, where a visitor would come into a vestibule through one set of doors, sign in with an official, and then be buzzed through a locked second set of doors. The work would add an enclosed courtyard that would serve as a pre-K and kindergarten play area.

The project will also give athletes fresh facilities. March Associates is proposing adding a baseball diamond with seating for 100 and a soccer/lacrosse field with seating for 300. Track and field participants will be able to enjoy a new discus and shot put area.

Superintendent of Schools Jane Collins laid out the following timeline for the project’s second phase:

■ Jan. 28: The board will vote on the project’s scope and also discuss the project’s school tax impact.

■ Feb. 1: A legal notice will appear of the March 19 public referendum to accept or deny the project.

■ Feb. 14: Postcards will be mailed to taxpayers giving highlights of the project’s new phase.

■ Feb. 25: The board will hold a public meeting regarding the project.

■ March 8: The board will hold a second public meeting regarding the project.

■ March 12 through 18: More postcards will be mailed along with public service announcements.

■ March 19: The project will be put to a referendum vote.

If the project passes the vote, the design phase will begin. Crolius said the design should be submitted to the state Department of Education by early winter of this year, work should start in the spring of next year, and should be completed by the fall of 2015.

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