The Times - Serving Waitsburg, Dayton and the Touchet Valley

By Dena Martin
The Times 

Capital Improvements Design Package Nears Completion


October 19, 2017

Courtesy Image

An early concept drawing of Field House Option 2.

School board reviews field house designs

WAITSBURG – A finalized schedule, scope and budget for Waitsburg School District's capital improvement projects is close to completion. Design West Senior Project Architect Ned Warnick told board members at an Oct. 11 work session that those numbers should be dialed in "over the next ten days or so."

Warnick updated board members on the projects and sought their input in narrowing down options. The scope of the $3.8 million project includes upgrading the HVAC system in all three schools, a complete renovation of the school kitchen and the construction of a field house at the athletic field.

Warnick said the plan is to bid the project early in 2018 to one general contractor who will handle the entire project. Warnick said the kitchen remodel will need to occur between the last day of school and the first day of school in 2018, but that the HVAC upgrades will probably begin during spring break and continue through fall. He estimated that work on the field house would begin during the end of track season to be finished by football season.

"We're touching almost every part of the district's facilities in this project. We're trying to take what is a relatively small bond amount and stretch it across all the things that were presented in the bond measure to do," Warnick told board members.


Warnick said that while the HVAC upgrades are the "least sexy" and not obvious to patrons, they are also the most fixed in cost, offering the least amount of options. Planned upgrades include adding cooling to the elementary school classrooms and multipurpose room, adding cooling to Preston Hall, and adding cooling to the first floor of the high school and the auditorium.

Warnick said that the main roof HVAC unit, or "the central plant," will be changed out in the elementary school, while much of the duct work will be reused and the classroom units will remain much the same.

He said the bond proposed the addition of air conditioning to the classrooms and multipurpose room, but did not list the hallways and library. He said Design West would propose a bid alternate for cooling those spaces as well, rather than having a piecemeal system.

Preston Hall was the one bright spot when it came to HVAC, Warnick said. It was already designed for air conditioning when it was remodeled in the mid 90s, and should be simple and straightforward to add cooling. Warnick said the budget numbers for Preston Hall came in lower than expected and that there should be very little disruption to the educational environment while the upgrades take place.

He said that while adding cooling to the first floor of the high school should be fairly straightforward, cooling the auditorium falls in the "not-so-good-news" category.

"The auditorium is really kind of a puzzle for us. It's not easy to solve this problem and it's not inexpensive to solve this problem," he said.

Warnick said there is really no working ventilation in the auditorium, which would require a whole new HVAC system to cool. He said it would be fairly straightforward, but very expensive, for a space that doesn't currently get a great deal of use.

He again suggested that they design the system as a bid alternate, which would allow the board to approve or deny the project based on whether the budget is available to cover it or not.


The renovated kitchen will retain the same area and work flow and functioning equipment will be reused. The cooking area will move from a center island to the back wall and a work center and proofing cabinets will take its place. The serving line will be upgraded, but remain in the same location, and the scullery/cleaning area will be improved with a more logical sequence. The walk-in coolers will gain about fifty percent in size, Warnick said.

Field House

Warnick presented three options for the new field house which will be located at the northeast end of the track, near the former Little League field. The board requested that Design West pursue the middle-sized option (minus one bathroom stall), which includes a combined concession/ticketing area on one end and two 400 square foot team rooms, which are divided by a bathroom area. There will be a large overhang to protect patrons from the weather while they wait for food or for the bathroom.

The preferred design is 1664 square feet as opposed to the larger plan which is 3200 square feet. That plan included a breezeway between the bathroom and team rooms as well as a storage area. Warnick suggested, and the board agreed, that it might be possible for volunteers to build a pole building for storage at a fraction of the cost of including it in the field house project, which will be paid at prevailing wage.

The smallest option, at 1000 square feet, included a combined concession/ticketing area and bathrooms. It did not include team rooms, which are required in order to hold playoff games.

Warnick expressed some concern about the budget but said that a design package with plans and updated cost estimates should be available within ten days from the Oct. 11 meeting.


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