School costs get trimmed
Board receives list of $1.3 million in cost savings for East Coventry Elementary School
SOUTH COVENTRY >> A month after approving contracts for the $25 million East Coventry Elementary School, the Owen J. Roberts School Board this week received a list of $1.3 million in cost savings to bring the project closer to budget.
Architect Maryann Marrotta, of MM Architects Inc., detailed a long list of potential savings the board could enact as change orders even before contracts are executed and ground broken on the new school.
They ranged from the size of the bricks using less mortar to changes in roof design eliminating several dormers.
Some items resulted in savings as minor as $1,800 with others as substantial as $84,000. Board members thanked the architects for coming up with a list that saves money without affecting square footage or learning space. “This keeps the focus on our kids,” while getting the costs down, said board member Kristina Barcus.
The total was $1,080,449, with another $229,211 deductions, bringing the savings to $1,309,660, district Chief Financial Officer Jaclin Krumrine said. That brought the variance to $1.4 million, compared to a $1.9 million difference between the approved budget for the project and the bids approved last month.
Krumrine said the $500,000 difference can be made up from the project contingency.
“We’re still waiting for the PennDOT permit before we can start construction,” said Melissa Booth, board vice chairman and chairman of the Building and Grounds Committee. “Unfortunately, this weather would be ideal for shovels in the ground,” but groundbreaking can’t happen until the permit comes through. “So if you know anybody at PennDOT …” she said.
Booth gave an update on the companion school project, East
Vincent, which is near completion. “Dust is flying, and everyone is scurrying” to put the finishing touches on the building.
Booth said the district will announce a move-in date when it’s definite. “We don’t want to announce a date tentatively and then have to change it,” she said.
The two school projects were originally planned to occur simultaneously but issues with East Coventry land development and percolation slowed the process. The project went out to bid in August.
Construction started a year ago on the $22.9 million East Vincent project.