Greater Johnstown School District’s capital project set

JOHNSTOWN — The Greater Johnstown School District is on a schedule to start bidding on the $29 million second phase of its capital project by February, officials heard Thursday at Johnstown High School.

Outgoing Board of Education President Scott Miller — due to become a city councilman in January — gave an update on the rest of the ongoing $39.6 million capital plan the school system has undertaken.

CS Arch of Albany, the district’s engineering firm, is hoping to gain state design approvals by the end of this month.

“It looks like you may be bidding in late January,” Miller told the rest of the board.

Board member Kathy Dougherty said some public information on future changes in buildings can be disseminated by principals.

District voters in December 2014 approved the nearly $40 million in capital projects. The state is paying for about 95 percent of the cost. The district wants to modify all of its buildings and sites to keep up with safety standards. The district is also upgrading spaces. The first major phase known as 4A is basically completed. Plans for the second $29 million portion of the project, known as 4B, were submitted to the State Education Department for approval. That work includes extensive renovations and additional wings at school buildings.

Miller, who previously headed the board’s Facilities Committee, noted that panel met just before the regular board Thursday night.

“I kind of went through some things that were outstanding,” Miller said.

That work includes window replacements at Knox Junior High School and Pleasant Avenue Elementary School, he said.

Miller said officials continue to look at whether work can be done at the high school’s south parking lot.

New board President Kathryn Zajicek said transportation in conjunction with capital project modifications area planned at JHS. She said no future bus traffic is planned for Pearl Street, which currently leads directly into the high school’s main lot.

She said neighbors in that area may be “relieved” when those changes are made.

“There‘s going to be a lot going on,” said Facilities Committee member Evamarie Mraz. “It’s going to effect the public. It’s going to effect the faculty and the students.”

Miller said the district administration is at the “beginning stages” reviewing specific breaks in the upcoming school schedule to accommodate workers for individual capital projects.

“We just started to talk about how it’s going to happen,” he said. “It will be a big matter. It’s pretty extensive when you talk about the different buildings.”

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at [email protected].

By Patricia Older

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