H-F High School board gets help prioritizing major maintenance projects

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H-F High School board gets help prioritizing major maintenance projects

March 01, 2021 - 20:34

DLA Architects updated a 10-year report that is designed to help Homewood-Flossmoor High School administrators and District 233 board members prioritize infrastructure projects.

“This is meant to be a tool,” said lead architect Ed Wright of DLA as he and architect Ryan Kelley gave an overview of their work at the February meeting of the board’s Finance Committee. The work is divided into three sections: 

  1. Operations, Maintenance and Life Safety. 
  2. Recurring Maintenance. 
  3. Capital Projects.

Roofs are a major portion of the first section and DLA looked at all the roofs. H-F has used a rotating schedule to replace roofs, which could have a 20- to 30-year lifespan, depending on maintenance, Wright said. Replacing a roof can also be a good time to replace mechanicals, such as air conditioning units. The district uses Precision Co. to assess and maintain the mechanicals at the North and South Buildings.

As part of its annual maintenance, DLA recommended replacing the roof on the South Building over the cafeteria. At its Feb. 16 meeting, the board approved the work for this summer and awarded a contract to J&F Chiattello Construction of Dyer, Indiana for $444,150.

H-F routinely does updates of select classrooms each summer. Wright said the report also looks at work in the Science Wing of the South Building, and what to do for the Career and Technical Education (CTE) area (formerly Applied Academics). 

With Fine Arts moving to new space, the area is now available for CTE. Wright estimated a redesign of that space could include installing an elevator to reach the lower level of G building, a mechanicals upgrade and general classroom upgrades. He said work for CTE is the newest addition to the 10-year update. 

The Mall Building, used by H-F sports teams and athletic trainers, is in need of repair, and there has been talk that the building should be torn down giving staff a chance to design a more useable space, Wright said. 

Estimated cost of a new building is $3 million to $5 million. The plan also outlines upgrades for baseball and softball fields for synthetic turf estimated at between $4 million and $5.7 million, and a replacement of the north tennis courts estimated at between $175,000 and $250,000. These estimates are based on 2020 construction costs.

Wright said H-F’s school board has been good about including money in every budget for routine maintenance.