Surry County Schools will spend more than $400,000 on repair projects over the coming months.
The Board of Education approved several bids this week for a total of $404,585 to fix leaky roofs, an HVAC chiller, parking lots and some sports surfaces.
The largest project already has received approval from the county Board of Commissioners, with money set aside for the project. The others either will need special approval from the commissioners or must come from the school system’s own budget.
Robert Draughn, director of plant operations, said six driveways need work, and all of them were grouped together for one bidding to get the best deal.
Draughn didn’t list the schools at this week’s school board meeting, but did list those six driveways a year ago in petitioning the county for funding. They were Franklin, Mountain Park, Shoals, Westfield and White Plains elementary schools and Central Middle School.
There are cracks in the asphalt that can be filled with tar and gravel, rather than a full repaving job, Draughn explained. The tar and gravel can seal the cracks and “hopefully lessen the intrusion of moisture to prevent further damage.”
Bidding out the six projects could have come to more than $200,000, according to an estimate given last year. However, Elkin company Carl Rose & Sons came in with the low bid of $134,244.
That still leaves the worst parking lot at North Surry, which has been repaired several times in the past decade. Since 2011, the school board has petitioned the commissioners for funding for that project, but it likely will cost more than $200,000 all by itself and hasn’t been approved yet.
Draughn told the school board that he would be back next month with bids for repainting the six lots.
• Two school gyms need work and were bid together. Draughn said bids were received Feb. 24, with Pilot Mechanical the low bid at $61,736.
The Department of Public Instruction has personnel that can help schools with planning work, and several of these projects put to bid will be coordinated with DPI help. The bidders will submit plans to DPI workers for approval.
Matthew Ward works in mechanical engineering, and Kim Lawson is the section chief for plant operation. They are assisting with these works.
Whenever the planning is complete, Draughn said the project would begin as soon as possible. Hopefully that work can be done before the end of the school year.
• Kim Lawson is assisting the district with two roofing projects. Copeland and Mountain Park have issues around their locker rooms.
Allied Roofing came in with the low bid of $37,740 for Mountain Park and $43,365 for Copeland.
The school board asked why Copeland was higher. Draughn said that this project also included an area over the boiler room.
The board asked why Allied came in $12,000 lower than any other bid for the two projects. Draughn said Allied has been doing work at Gentry and North Surry and already has some needed equipment on site. He suggested that this makes it easier for the company to get started.
• Stanley Heating & Air was the low bidder to replace the chiller at Dobson Elementary, $54,100.
Draughn said he hoped that DPI and Stanley get the plans worked out soon so that the chiller could be replaced before the cooling season arrives.
• Unlike HVAC or roof work, tennis and track surfaces take specialty companies. Draughn said he contacted three companies that do tennis court repairs for work at North Surry.
Each company provided a detailed description of the work and estimates. The low bidder can begin work as soon as season ends this spring — which is typically around the first of May.
The courts were reconstructed back in the 2006-07 school year, according to Draughn. Now they need some crack filling, resurfacing and repainting.
Court One beat out Carolina Courtworks by $400 with a bid of $31,383.
If funds are available, then East Surry and Surry Central could be repaired in the next two budgets, he suggested.
• Court One also presented the low bid on resurfacing Surry Central’s track oval.
Surry Central first had a rubber surface on the track in 2006-07. Surry Central has hosted the majority of middle school and high school matches in the district over the past decade, and the track is showing its age.
Draughn said the project will add a new layer of rubber, then a protective coating and finally new lines painted.
Under good conditions, this could take two weeks to complete.
The work could begin at the start of June, or be pushed back slightly if Surry Central were to hold graduation outdoors at the stadium. In recent years, the heat and/or summer showers have often driven graduation into the school gym.
The low bid was for $42,017, a little under the $45,000 estimate Draughn received last spring.
Reach Jeff at 415-4692.