Learn more about the Phase 2 Building Renovation and Facility Improvement Project at this informational presentation on Wed., June 11 at 6:30 p.m.
June 4, 2014…A public information forum will be held on Wednesday, June 11 to give district residents and community members an opportunity to learn more about the proposed Phase 2 Building Renovation and Facility Improvement Project. The forum will be held at the Liberty High School Library/Media Center (125 Buckley St., Liberty).
The scope of the proposed $13.6 million project was narrowed from an original district-wide scope that carried a price tag of $28 million. After months of contemplation by the Board of Education, proposed renovations and improvements will be limited to the high school, where the most pressing renovations are needed.
“The project is the continuation of the renovation plan introduced in 2007, approved by voters in 2008 and completed in 2010,” explained Liberty Superintendent Dr. William Silver. “It was always the plan to continue with necessary renovations throughout the district. Limiting the scope for Phase 2 to the essential renovations at the high school is what the Board of Education felt was the most fiscally responsible option for the taxpayers, while also improving the quality of student learning and opportunities.”
Phase 2 proposes the following
• Replacement and repair of original façade, exterior walls & brick work
• Replacement of building envelope: windows and curtain wall
• Classroom renovations (necessary after work on exterior wall replacement)
• New bleacher system in gym
• Replacement of air handler unit in gym
• Drainage/technology upgrades
• Expansion of the art and music wing; tech ed classrooms
• Expansion of guidance suite
• Auditorium upgrades including ventilation, lighting, rigging and house lights systems
• Reconfiguration of cafeteria to improve sight lines, community space, food service options
• Replacement of interior doors in corridors
In many instances, the proposed scope seeks to remedy the aging and inefficient infrastructure, most of which has not been repaired or replaced since it was built over 50 years ago. Other aspects seek to renovate programming space to create improved, flexible work and program spaces that could provide more opportunity for collaboration and communication – essential to 21st-century learning.
The project, estimated to cost $13.6 million, will be paid for using a combination of reserve funds and state building aid, with the rest of the funding coming from voter approved construction bonds. A public referendum is tentatively scheduled for Tuesday, October 21, 2014.
“If approved, taxpayers would pay approximately $42 per year for a home assessed at $100,000 (without STAR reimbursement), $30 per year with STAR and $15 per year for those who are eligible for Enhanced STAR,” explained Dr. Silver. “The final numbers are still up in the air and the Board still has decisions to make that could affect the final amount.”
The forum is being presented in June to give the community a sense of what the project encompasses, details about why the renovations are needed and explains how the project will be funded. There will be another presentation in the fall, prior to the proposed referendum. “We thought it was important to let the community know what the project is about now, rather than wait for the summer to go by,” explained Dr. Silver. “We look forward to getting feedback from the community so we can get a sense of their thoughts about the project.”