Parkview looks to hire local construction firm for $17 million project

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Gina Duwe
Friday, April 11, 2014

ORFORDVILLE--The Parkview School District plans to invite a select group of area construction companies to bid later this month on the remodeling of and additions to its Orfordville schools, the superintendent said.

The school board at a special meeting Thursday night also decided to stick with Somerville, the Green Bay architectural and engineering company it contracted with for pre-referendum work, to be the architect on the project, Superintendent Steve Lutzke said Friday.

The district's lawyer is reviewing a contract for Somerville, and Lutzke expects to sign it next week. The contract will be for 5.75 percent of the final building costs, he said.

Voters last week approved a $17 million referendum to swap the grade levels at the Orfordville schools by remodeling the junior/senior high school and remodeling and adding on to the elementary school.

Of the $17 million, the high school addition will be about $11 million, while elementary work will be about $4 million. Site work will total about $950,000, Lutzke said. The remaining portion pays for the architectural contract and other contracts such as a civil engineering and soil sampling.

Officials were “very satisfied with the work they (Somerville) did with pre-planning and the referendum,” Lutzke said. “I think we developed a rapport with quite a few of their staff, and they got quite a bit of work done with the building project.”

If the district wasn't happy and needed to hire someone else, he said, it could be more costly and would slow the process. Lutzke said he called several school districts that worked with Somerville, and all said they would hire Somerville again.

The board is planning to approve a request for proposals at its April 21 meeting for an invited group of construction management companies, Luztke said. They haven't finalized the list, but he said they wanted to select four to six companies with reputations for efficiency and local hiring.

“We're pretty comfortable we can find a good firm to help us without having to step outside of, for sure, Rock County, maybe Dane County,” he said.

The board would interview companies and hopefully hire one in early May, he said.

Lutzke said he doesn't expect the overall design of the construction already presented to change much, but the location of a room or two might move. Once the construction manager is hired, it will work with the architects and the district to come up with a detailed plan that fits within the budget. 

Decisions such as paint color and carpeting will come later, but Lutzke said the board wants to have more discussions with staff and some community members.

“The teachers and employees are going to get a lot of input into what they want in the rooms, what type of amenities—how many outlets, where they want them on the wall, where they want cabinets,” he said.

“I think the more voices we get feedback from, the more assurance we'll have that it's going to look really nice,” he said.

Groundbreaking likely will be in late June to early August, but it is contingent on how quickly a construction manager is hired, Lutzke said. The goal is to complete the project by the start of school in fall 2015.

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