By Shannon Rigsby
Dirt work has started on the sites for elementary number eight at 44th and Czech Hall and intermediate number three at 15th and Czech Hall. Crews have cut a road for equipment into the property for elementary eight and will soon do the same for intermediate three. Both projects are set to open in July of 2018.
After many interviews, Mustang Public Schools has split all of the 2017 bond projects between two architects, GH2 and MA+ Architecture. GH2 is the architect for both the elementary and intermediate school. Crossland Construction is the construction management company for all projects.
Superintendent Dr. Sean McDaniel said teams have been meeting since last November and planning for the first round of projects. The initial phase of preparing the schematic design and rough renderings is customary, even before a bond issue passes. Once the bond issue passed, phase two, design and development, began in earnest.
“That is where they take the schematic designs and began carving out spaces and identifying square footages inside the building to come up with a floor plan,” he said. “We have pulled in the end users of particular components for their input in the design and development plans. Principals, assistant principals, child nutrition, the transportation director and others have had input into the design of both buildings.”
For example, child nutrition director, Tammy Bales, and some of her employees provided their expertise about the flow of the serving lines and the kitchens as well as the types of equipment needed.
“We are trying to do a better job than we have done in the past in including those who are going to use the facilities,” McDaniel said. “It’s vital that we hear how things work in the current buildings, what they require for their area to function properly and what we could do to improve on past designs.”
When the design and development phase is complete, McDaniel said projects move on to the construction documents phase. Once Crossland has construction documents, the estimated cost of the project, which was initially calculated from formulas, is refined as each piece is sent out for bid.
Besides the two schools slated to open in 2018, the design and development phase has started with the Performing Arts Center. It’s the largest of the bond projects and will be constructed on the north-east side of the MHS Campus, across Juniper Drive. Construction is scheduled to start on the PAC in August 2018. The Canyon Ridge Band Room addition is in the construction document phase and is expected to be finished by May of 2018.
McDaniel said conversations have already started with principals at some of the older school sites on possible improvements to aesthetics or function with money allocated for that purpose in the bond. The decisions will be made after principal input and final decisions will be site and budget based.
“This is an unbelievable time for Mustang Schools,” he said. “We can’t say thank you enough to the voters who continue to support our kids and our teachers, making room for our growing population and providing them with opportunities as well.”
To see the current timeline for the projects, or an animated tour of the new elementary school, visit the MPS website.