March 22 Update

Early Childhood Center

The construction work continues to make solid progress at the new Early Childhood Center located on the west side of Lincoln Elementary. The timeline continues on target to begin the 2017-2018 school year in the new facility. All the underground utilities are in and the cement floor has been poured. Interior walls are going up with sheetrock to begin soon. In addition, the brickwork is scheduled to start the week of March 27. Everything appears to be perfectly on schedule. There have been a few minor change orders but nothing major. Thus, the financial piece of the construction of the Early Childhood Center remains squarely on track.

High School

The High School bid process was completed a few weeks ago and brought good news to the District. There were 20-plus separate bid packages that saw in excess of 80 bids from local and area firms. This resulted in competitive bids for that totaled approximately $900,000 under estimate. That, of course, is excellent news for the District. Work is scheduled to begin in early May at the High School. The science wing remodel will begin then and take place through August with the hopes of being complete by September 1. Other work at the High School—HVAC, roofing, auditorium, main security entrance and District office, DCD remodel, locker rooms, bleachers, multipurpose room—will all kickoff in earnest on May 30. Although the majority of the work will be completed in June, July, and August, we know that not all of it will be finished by September 1. Plans to coordinate the remaining work and the start of the 2017-2018 will be developed this spring and summer.

Lindbergh Elementary

The Lindbergh Elementary bid process was completed and approved by the Board of Education on March 20. Once again, the District enjoyed the benefits of a highly competitive bid process, resulting in bids that came in at approximately $1 million under estimate. This amount didn’t include everything (for example, ADA door hardware will be bid out later on) but still the dollar amount under budget is great news. The timeline for work at Lindbergh is still being developed but work at Lindbergh will be extensive over the summer months. It will include construction and remodeling in the following areas: HVAC, roof, designated cafeteria, main security entrance and office, parking lot, extended pickup/dropoff entrance on 9th Street Southeast, 1950s wing classrooms, and enclosing classrooms around the Flight Deck. Many of the classrooms have to be completely packed up and the contents stored. Every day matters with a project this large and most of it needing to be completed in three months.

Parking and Dropoff/Pickup

Both the High School and Lindbergh will see a revamping of parking and student dropoff/pickup processes. The changes will be made first and foremost for safety and security purposes. Here’s a brief synopsis of what is being planned:

Lindbergh

The upper parking lot at Lindbergh (shared with the Middle School) proves to be a highly congested area during the start and the end of the school day. Beginning with the next school year, parents dropping off and picking up students before and after school will occur at the lower entrance to Lindbergh on 9th Street Southeast. The dropoff/pickup area will be extended to the south along 9th Street Southeast that will enable a smoother process before and after school. Buses and vans will all dropoff and pickup students on the upper level only. Again, we are stressing the safety and security features that this change will have for our students, families, and staff.

High School Student Parking

Beginning with the start of the 2017-2018 school year, right turns onto 9th Street Southeast from the student parking will not be allowed at the end of the school day (3:00-3:30). Again, this is a safety precaution as the pickup/dropoff zone at Lindbergh Elementary is moving to the 9th Street Southeast school entrance. Therefore, limiting the cars driving north on 9th Street Southeast at the end of the school day will decrease congestion in front of Lindbergh Elementary and increase safety for students and adults.

High School Entrance

The student parking lot will become the only entrance to the High School for students and adults once the school day begins. Short-time parking slots will be added to the student parking lot. Once the construction is completed, visitors to the school will check-in via the secure entrance that will be constructed adjacent to the student parking lot. The Activities Department, Community Recreation, and the Superintendent’s office will be located there. Meanwhile, visitors to the Business Office and Human Resources will use the “front” entrance (commonly referred to as “Circle Drive”) to enter. However, visitors will not have access to the main High School building through the front entrance; they will only have access to the Business Office and Human Resources.

The District will devote time this summer to advertise the new parking and dropoff/pickup process. We ask that our district residents and stakeholders understand the safety and security rationale behind these changes. We understand that this is a deviation from the way it’s been done for years but the changes are being done with the best safety and security interests in mind.

Middle School Roof

Work began on the roof at the Middle School in early March. This project was bid out last fall so the roofers were waiting for good weather to begin. They have had two solid weeks of decent weather to get an early jump on the work. Bleacher replacement at the Middle School is slated to begin on May 8 and needs to be completed in three weeks.

Summer Activities Adjusted

Summer programming that usually takes place at the High School, Lindbergh, and the Belle Prairie Complex (except for weightlifting and conditioning at the High School) has been relocated for this summer. Please contact Community Services or the offices at the High School/Lindbergh with questions you may have.

Lincoln Elementary

The security and office reconstruction will take place at Lincoln Elementary this summer. Plans are in the works and will be finalized soon.

Summer 2018

In looking ahead to the construction work for the summer of 2018, Dr. Knight Elementary and the Middle School will be the focus. Architects and engineers are currently beginning the planning to determine the scope of the various projects. As plans evolve and cost estimates are created, construction companies can anticipate the bidding process for these jobs to occur in January-February 2018.

Belle Prairie Complex

Now that spring has officially sprung, work will ensue at the Belle Prairie Complex within the next week or two. Dirt work will begin first followed by the installation of irrigation. In addition, work on storm drains and the parking lot will begin. Throughout the spring and early summer, signs of the transformation of Belle Prairie into a soccer and baseball complex will be quite visible.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions and concerns. I can be reached by phone at (320) 632-2001 or e-mail at sjones@lfalls.k12.mn.us.

Thank you,
Steve

January 5, 2017 Update

Holiday Break Construction Work

Lincoln Elementary

Lincoln’s gymnasium was the focus of the work in that building: ceiling tiles were replaced and repainted; the ductwork and walls were painted, acoustical tiles were mounted, lighting was replaced, and the sound system was modified and improved.

High School

At the High School, work took place in a couple of areas. The inside second set of doors at the “front” entrance to the High School were relocated closer to the Commons. The purpose of this work is to prepare for future security enhancements at the High School. In the gymnasium, a new dropdown curtain was installed at center court. The bleachers on the upper south end of the gymnasium (weight room) have been dismantled and removed in preparation of additional work in that area.

Early Childhood Construction

Work continues at the new Early Childhood Center located on the western side of Lincoln Elementary. Despite the frigid cold weather and recent snows, progress continues on the groundwork. The footings are in and soon we will see the erection of walls; it is hoped that by February the shell of the building will be up to allow work to begin “inside” the new building. It is certainly an aggressive timeframe for the construction to be finished in time for the start of school for our Early Childhood program.

High School Design

The design phase of the comprehensive work to be done at the High School is nearly complete. After multiple user group meetings and editing of plans, the final design is rounding into form. It is hoped that the bid packages will be ready and available for distribution to contractors before the end of January. This would mean a bid opening by mid-to-late-February. The timeline of the construction is still to be determined in each specific area in the High School; the goal, of course, is to get as much done during the months of June, July, and August. However, with the extent of the work looming, there is no possibility that everything started in June will be wrapped up by the end of August. Once the bids are sent out, the construction timeline will be refined.

Lindbergh Elementary Design

Planning work at Lindbergh Elementary is likewise underway but is not as advanced as the High School planning work quite yet. However, as the design phase nears its completion following multiple user group meetings, it is hoped that the bid packages will go out to contractors by late-January or early-February. Again, the goal is to get the bulk of the work done in June, July, and August. However, just like at the High School, there is the certain likelihood that not everything will be finished at the start of the school year.

Parking and Student Dropoff/Pickup

Both the High School and Lindbergh will see a revamping of parking and student dropoff/pickup. The changes will be made first and foremost for safety and security purposes. Here’s a brief synopsis of what is being planned:

Lindbergh

The upper parking lot at Lindbergh (shared with the Middle School) proves to be a highly congested area during the start and the end of the school day. Beginning with the next school year, parents dropping off and picking up students before and after school will occur at the lower entrance to Lindbergh on 9th Street Southeast. The City of Little Falls is planning extensive work on 9th Street Southeast as part of its summer street work plan—there is a public meeting about it on January 17 @ 7:30 PM at City Hall. The dropoff/pickup area will be greatly extended to the south along 9th Street Southeast that will enable a smoother process before and after school. Buses and vans will all dropoff and pickup students on the upper level only. Again, we are stressing the safety and security features that this change will have for our students, families, and staff.

High School

The student parking lot will become the entrance to the school for students and adults during the school day. Short-time parking slots will be added to the student parking lot. Once the construction is completed, visitors to the school will check-in via the secure entrance that will be constructed adjacent to the student parking lot. The Activities Department, Community Recreation, and the Superintendent’s office will be located there. Meanwhile, visitors to the Business Office and Human Resources will use the “front” entrance (commonly referred to as “Circle Drive”) to enter. However, visitors will not have access to the main High School building through the front entrance; they will only have access to the Business Office and Human Resources.

The district will devote time this summer to advertise the new parking and dropoff/pickup process. We ask that our district residents and stakeholders understand the safety and security rationale behind these changes. We understand that this is a deviation from the way it’s been done for years but the changes are being done with the best safety and security interests in mind.

Belle Prairie Complex Spring Work

Once the winter weather subsides and spring is in the air, there will be a much-heightened level of work taking place at the Belle Prairie Complex. Residents will see groundwork happening followed by work on irrigation, parking, infrastructure, and the fields themselves taking pace throughout the spring and summer.

Future Planning

Once the bid work is done on Lindbergh and the High School, more specific design work will ensue at Dr. Knight, Lincoln, and the Middle School. The majority of the work for these three locations (with the exception of the Middle School roof) will occur during the summer of 2018.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions and concerns. I can be reached by phone at (320) 632-2001 or e-mail at sjones@lfalls.k12.mn.us.

Thank you,
Steve

October 11 Update

 

Track Work Complete

Tri-City did its final seeding and groundwork on the area adjacent to the track so everything should now be finalized. The district has ordered protective mats that will arrive within the next week or two; if they are not used this year, they will be after this winter to continue to lengthen the life of the track. It’s wonderful to elementary, middle school, and high school students using the track this fall…from morning exercise time at Lindbergh Elementary to Physical Education classes at both the Middle School and High School. We are excited to host at least two Track & Field meets in the spring of the year. Overall, the project came in a few thousand dollars under budget.

Bids for Upcoming Projects

More than 75 bids were received for the 21 various packages that were available during the Bid Opening for the Early Childhood Center and MiddleSchool roof project on October 6. As Contegrity verified all of the bids as well as the requisite bonding necessary, the good news is that the sum total of the bids came in under budget. Even with adding in a few alternates (for example, including some additional roof work at the Middle School), the project is determined to be well under budget, even without figuring in contingency dollars.

In addition, we are very pleased to confirm that at least six businesses located within our district boundaries earned work through the bid packages. A number of the other successful bidding firms, which are located in Central Minnesota have employees who live within our school district. This is indeed great news!

We still intend to start the Early Childhood project yet this fall, at least getting the dirt work and footings ready to go as soon as possible. The plan is to work on the new construction during the fall and winter months, looking at a late-spring or early-summer completion time period. In all likelihood, roof work at the Middle School will not begin until springtime.

High School Planning

Planning work continues at the High School. There are many areas that have received the attention of the architects and construction managers over the past few months. The final planning for the science department remodel is starting to take shape; the goal is to create a space that allows for collaboration while still providing some classroom independence.

Information has been gathered for reworking the sound and lighting in the Charles D. Martin Auditorium…as well as creating a backstage entrance from the music department directly onto the stage. The new main security entrance to be located on the west side of the high school by the student parking lot is in the formative stages. This will be the only entrance into the high school once the school day begins, and it will be a fully secured entry. Community Recreation, Activities Department, and Superintendent will be located in this new space. There will be a slight reconfiguration of the parking lot as well. Also, an elevator will be installed which will allow accessibility to the gymnasium floor without having to exit the building. In addition, bleacher replacement, wrestling room, and locker room remodeling are in the initial draft stages.

There is also extensive work that will occur with HVAC and roof replacement at the High School as well as some smaller projects—bathroom remodeling, door and lock replacement, and DCD area improvements. We are anticipating that a number of bid packages related to work at the High School will be available during the first few months of 2017.

Lindbergh Planning

Planning work at Lindbergh Elementary is likewise underway but is not as advanced as the High School planning work quite yet. Coordination is the key as planning continues for the cafeteria and main office and security entrance remodel; it’s the Domino Theory in that one has to follow the other so the timing must be impeccable. Plans seem pretty solid for the cafeteria; the Main Office and security entrance continues to evolve. One of the programmatic changes will involve Kids Korner needing to find a different space within Lindbergh to center the program—that continues to be developed. The classrooms in the Flight Deck will all be enclosed as the project ensues. There will be substantial HVAC work done at Lindbergh as well as roof replacement. Another of the Lindbergh puzzle that is under investigation has to do with the drop-off and pick-up of children in the mornings and afternoons, and its impact on busing from the main Lindbergh-Middle School parking lot. As plans become more detailed and as bid packages are assembled, more information will be provided.

Dr. Knight Planning

TSP Architects plan to spend a portion of an upcoming day—perhaps Monday, October 17—at Dr. Knight to begin preliminary site plan development. Although in all likelihood work at Dr. Knight would not take place until the summer of 2018, the architects would like to begin creating the detailed plans that go into the amount of referendum-approved work.

The amount of work that needs to be done at all of the district sites means that it simply cannot all be accomplished in one summer, and that there has to be a timeline that allows completion of some construction projects before new ones begin.

Belle Prairie Complex

Planning for work yet this fall continues at the Belle Prairie Complex. As soon as the soccer season is completed, dirt moving may begin; depending upon the weather through October and November, there is hope that the bulk of the ground preparation and dirt moving can be done before the snow flies and ends the work season. The more that can get done this fall from the volunteers, the sooner field construction can occur in the spring.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions and concerns. I can be reached by phone at (320) 632-2001 or e-mail at sjones@lfalls.k12.mn.us.

Thank you
Steve

September 4 Update – Track Complete!

Track Grand Re-Opening

Employees from Fisher Track have finished the final hard construction piece and striping work of the track. This means that the track was almost 100% complete in time for the first home football game on Thursday, September 1. All that’s left to do is Tri-City Paving will return to finalize the last bit of dirt touch up work along with some additional seeding work. The track will be available for full usage by students at the beginning of the school year.

In conjunction with the repair work and reconstruction of the Track, we will be hosting a “Grand Re-Opening” of the Track on Saturday morning, September 10, at 9:00 AM. In addition to a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 9:00 AM, there will be opportunities for children and adults to get their first walk, jog, or run on the track. It is the district’s hope that we can open up the track at scheduled times over the next two months for residents of the communities to use. We will keep you posted.

Bid Packages

The work continues at an accelerated pace for the Early Childhood Center on the west side of Lincoln Elementary School. It has been a frenetic pace with the goal of eliciting bids yet this fall. In fact, it will happen…with bid opening scheduled for October 6 @ 2:00. This is great news so if bids are accepted, work on the Early Childhood Center will occur in conjunction with the school year.

An additional bid package will commence along with the Early Childhood Center and that is the Middle School roof package. A total of approximately 55,000 square feet of roof is set for replacement; it is hoped that by combining it with the Early Childhood package that the worst 11,000 square feet of Middle School roof could possible be done yet this fall. There may be some disruption during this phase of construction but it is too early to tell; certainly, any construction work is being planned with the educational process at the forefront.

Both the Planning Commission and the Little Falls City Council approved the conditional use permit for which the district applied for the new construction of the Early Childhood Center. We are appreciative of the working relationship between the district and its community partners.

Belle Prairie Complex

Planning continues on the Belle Prairie Complex. The site-grading plan has been completed so we know what needs to be done to create baseball and soccer fields that will be perfectly level and will facilitate the irrigation work that will occur in the springtime. Depending upon the weather this fall, there may be some preliminary ground work going on at Belle Prairie—it all depends upon Mother Nature. The parking lot area was again plowed up in the past two weeks as we prepare for the winter snows

High School Science

The architects and construction management team met with the High School Science Department members for the third time to continue to refine the concept and design for the reconstruction of the science rooms at LFCHS. The goal, of course, is to make the classrooms more student-friendly and to eliminate the necessity for students to walk through one classroom to enter another. In addition, much of the science laboratory equipment dates back to when the building was originally built in 1972 so updating the lab stations is a key desired outcome.

Timeline and Planning

Weeks like the one we just completed present the perfect evidence for the need to create a system at Lindbergh Elementary that adds more fresh air and also present some dehumidification of it as well. The heat and humidity of August, September, April, May, and June can be stifling to children and adults alike. We continue to try to hone in on an overall construction timeline that allows us to impact the buildings with the most severe needs as early in the construction process as possible.

The focus thus far has been on plan development for Early Childhood, Middle School roof, Lindbergh, and the High School. Because we will have work ongoing over the next two years in five buildings, we need to be thoughtful in the manner in which we proceed with construction planning and the development of timelines. As we are truly focused upon using as many local and regional contractors as possible, spreading out the work in our five buildings over two summers (2017 & 2018) should allow us to use a greater number of smaller, local contractors to do the work.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions and concerns. I can be reached by phone at (320) 632-2001 or e-mail at sjones@lfalls.k12.mn.us.

Thank you,
Steve Jones

August 10 Update

Bond Sale Financing

The district has received the money from the very successful July 6 bond sale. Because of historically low interest rates, the citizens of the district were the beneficiaries of $6.6 million less in anticipated tax cost for the referendum. The bond rate has also allowed the district to reduce the term of the referendum payments from 25 years to 20 years, all at a less-per-year cost than originally predicted.

Track Update

Employees from Fisher Track reported to Little Falls on Sunday, August 7, and have been busy working this week on the final stages of track construction. The rain that fell Wednesday morning slowed progress for a handful of hours; however, work is moving at a pace where Fisher could be done with their work on the track early during the week of August 15. This should provide enough time for the line striping work to get done before the first home football game on September 1.

Early Childhood Planning Process

The plan preparation work continues with the Early Childhood facility. As happens with many projects of this size, choices need to be continually analyzed, priced, reworked, and revisited…this is no different with this piece of the construction project. It’s a delicate balance of meeting the needs of the educational desires of the new building versus containing costs and managing expenditures. TSP Architects and Contegrity (Construction Management) understand the financial parameters and we will maintain it throughout.

The City of Little Falls Planning Commission met on Monday, August 8, to discuss the district’s request. The Commission approved it and forwarded it as is to the agenda for the Little Falls City Council meeting on August 15. All the required paperwork is completed and fees are paid. Should the Council approve it on August 15, the district anticipates going forward with the bidding process for the Early Childhood Center in late-August or early-September.

Auditorium Planning

The architects and construction management team will be meeting with staff on August 15 to begin discussion concerning the proposed work in the Charles D. Martin Auditorium at the high school. The particulars of the work are not finalized yet, of course, but anticipated work includes lighting, sound, rigging, and stage. A total of $363,355.00 has been designated for the costs of improvements in the auditorium.

Lindbergh Elementary HVAC Need

If you’ve had the opportunity to visit Lindbergh Elementary during the past week, it quickly becomes apparent that there is a dire need for HVAC work…especially dehumidification…in the building. As the humidity and heat increases outdoors, the air inside Lindbergh is stagnant and stifling. I am pleased to think about the environmental difference that students and adults will see at Lindbergh beginning with the 2017-2018 school year.

Middle School Roof

We continue to plan to address the most severe roof needs at the Middle School yet this fall. The roof bid package will be ready to go within the next 30-45 days with work occurring in October and November on at least the worst 11,000 square feet of the roof. Because of the timing of the work, there may be some minimal disruption at the Middle School during the school day but our emphasis continues to focus on limiting school day noise and interruption.

Belle Prairie Site Planning

The site-grading plan is nearing finalization for the Belle Prairie Complex. Once that is finished and presented, decisions will be made on irrigation timing, parking, and general field construction. However, until we have the site-grading plan in hand, we can’t specify the “when” and the “how.”

Planning Process

The focus thus far has been on plan development for Early Childhood, Middle School roof, Lindbergh, and the High School. Because we will have work ongoing over the next two years in five buildings, we need to be thoughtful in the manner in which we proceed with construction planning and the development of timelines. As we are truly focused upon using as many local and regional contractors as possible, spreading out the work in our five buildings over two summers (2017 & 2018) should allow us to use a greater number of smaller, local contractors to do the work.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions and concerns. I can be reached by phone at (320) 632-2001 or e-mail at sjones@lfalls.k12.mn.us.

Thank you,
Steve

July Progress

Bond Sale Update

The district should receive the money from the July 6 bond sale on or about August 3. This will allow us to really kick things into high gear as planning work continues as well as some construction starts. Just as a reminder—the district and its taxpayers were the beneficiaries of historically low bond rates that allow a reduction of $6.6 million in the anticipated tax cost for the referendum. The bond rate has also allowed the district to reduce the term of the referendum from 25 years to 20 years…all good news for district residents.

Early Childhood Center

We continue to work aggressively this summer in preparation for August bids for the Early Childhood Center at Lincoln Elementary. The architects have been preparing plans as engineers work on documents for HVAC, drainage, and operations. The hope is that we can begin construction on the 10,000-plus square foot facility in October.

One of the aspects of construction, of course, is securing the proper permits and payment of fees to allow construction to begin. The Early Childhood Center will be discussed at the City of Little Falls Planning Commission meeting on August 8 and at subsequently at the Little Falls City Council meeting on August 15.  All the required paperwork is completed and fees are paid.

Science Renovations

Monday morning, August 1, the architects and construction management team will be meeting with the high school science department to continue the visioning work of the remodel of the high school science department. If you are familiar with the high school science department, you will know that it is a very “open” concept…an educational model from the 1970s when the high school was built. At LFCHS, for example, someone has to walk through one classroom to get to a second classroom that, by nature, causes disruption. The remodel is aimed at constructing hallways and individual learning environments while also updating the academic spaces and laboratories. The architects have already met twice with the science team members earlier this year.

Major Work Planned at Lindbergh

Planning work at Lindbergh has begun. There is substantial work to do at Lindbergh—HVAC, roofs, windows, doors, etc.—but the truly exciting pieces are the relocation of the Lindbergh office space so a cafeteria can be built, freeing up the gymnasium for classroom space all day long instead of doubling as a gymnasium/cafeteria. Of all the work that is planned over the next two years, this is the area that is truly the most “site changing” in the district.

One other aspect of Lindbergh that will receive quite of bit of attention is the parking lot area. Simply stated, we need to find a way to relieve some of the congestion that is rampant in both the mornings and afternoons…realizing that we are basically landlocked. That really limits the expansion that could solve many of our concerns—it really will take some meaningful planning to come up with system that produces a safe travel area while keeping traffic moving.

Belle Prairie Site Planning

We are into the 5th or 6th week of the site grading development plan at Belle Prairie.  When this plan is finished, we’ll know just how much fill needs to be brought in to guarantee a level complex that produces excellent drainage. The grading plan will also allow the irrigation system to be installed in the most prudent and effective manner.

Track Nearing Completion

Tri-City Paving of Little Falls has completed its work (except for a drainage issue that arose following the heavy rains on July 10-11). The track and runways are in the curing stage; we anticipate that personnel from Fisher Track will begin their work on August 15 and they will apply the top coating/overlay on the bituminous base. Plans are for the striping and line painting to occur before the first home football game on September 1 (weather, of course, could impact this timeline).

Timeline Development

People in our communities are quite interested in the construction timelines. The reality is that the bulk of the work will take place in June, July, and August of 2017 and June, July, and August of 2018.  As we are truly focused upon using as many local and regional contractors as possible, spreading out the main work areas over two summers should allow us to use a greater number of smaller, local contractors to do the work.  This means that in all likelihood work on all five buildings will not be happening in the same summer.  It’s quite possible that Lincoln, Lindbergh, and the High School may be where the main construction takes place in the summer of 2017 and that the Middle School (outside of the roof) and Dr. Knight may be in the summer of 2018.  This is where the conversation is heading right now; however, this is certainly not cemented.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions and concerns. I can be reached by phone at (320) 632-2001 or e-mail at sjones@lfalls.k12.mn.us.

Thank you,
Steve Jones

Construction Update

Approximately every two weeks over the next 2-plus years, we will be providing updates of the Little Falls Community Schools construction projects to keep our district residents and stakeholders fully aware of the status of this work.

Please do not hesitate to contact me should you have questions or concerns.

  1. The district received great news on July 6 when the bond sale for both the referendum and the Long Term Facilities Maintenance Revenue (LTFMR) were finalized. The final rates came in at 2.46% and 1.91% respectively. This nearly historic low bond rate allows the district taxpayers to anticipate a tax impact for principal and Interest that is more than $6.6 million less than the amounts that were predicted during the months leading up to the Referendum Vote on May 10. In addition, the length of the bond payments went from 25 years to 20 years. This is very, very good news.
  2. Work continues on preparing for anticipated construction of the Early Childhood Center this fall to be built onto Lincoln Elementary. July 18 will be the tentative final approval date of the architectural design.  Contegrity, Inc. will begin work to prepare bid packages to be sent out mid-August…open bids early-September…with construction hopefully starting on or before October 10. The goal is to begin the construction early enough to allow work to continue inside during the winter months.
  3. There is need to obtain a number of permits so the architects will be working with City officials to get that done.  The Early Childhood Center will be discussed at the Planning Commission meeting on August 8 and at the City Council meeting on August 15.  We will also eventually need a conditional use permit at the High School…and likely other permits as the process continues.
  4. Site surveys are in the planning stages and/or ongoing at Lincoln, High School, Dr. Knight, Lindbergh, and Middle School.  Soil borings have taken place at Lincoln and the High School.
  5. We are into the 3rd or 4th week of the site grading development plan at Belle Prairie.  We were told that the process would take approximately six weeks.  This plan is necessary to determine the grading needs so that work can take place, perhaps in conjunction with irrigation.
  6. We continue to work on timelines of construction.  The reality is that the bulk of the work will take place in June, July, and August of 2017 and June, July, and August of 2018.  Also, we are intent upon using as many local and regional contractors as possible.  This means that in all likelihood work on all five buildings will not be happening in the same summer.  It’s quite possible that Lincoln, Lindbergh, and the High School may be where the main construction takes place in the summer of 2017 and that the Middle School (outside of the roof) and Dr. Knight may be in the summer of 2018.  Again…this is nowhere near a sure deal yet…but trying to plan as much as possible.
  7. Track update–the rain the other night slowed things down a bit.  The second round of bituminous was laid on Tuesday, July 12…after which a 28-30 day “curing” period will take place.  Fisher Track will be here immediately after that to put the overlay on…and then more curing time.  With the first football game scheduled for Thursday, September 1, it is going to be tight to be able to get the track painted and lined by then…we’ll have to see how the weather cooperates.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions and concerns. I can be reached by phone at (320) 632-2001 or e-mail at sjones@lfalls.k12.mn.us.

Thank you,

Steve