When it comes to the $56.4 million spent so far on Measure G school modernization projects what you see isn’t all of what you get.
Between 20 to 30 percent of the money spent is either below ground, in walls, or in the substantial re-grading of school sites.
Aging water and sewer lines that were problematic have been replaced. Classroom wiring in old classrooms were brought up to code. Any exposed overhead outside power lines were buried to increase safety.
One of the biggest items was grading work and resurfacing areas,
Drainage had been a problem at all five schools modernized in the first phase — Lincoln, Shasta, Sequoia, Golden West, and Lathrop. Sitting water during the rainy season not only posed safety hazards for students and staff but it was also deteriorating asphalt and opening up cracks.
At the same time some schools lacked adequate playground areas due to portable placement over the years. There was also the issue that various grades in and around playgrounds were no longer compliant with current Americans with Disabilities Act standards.
Where ever possible and practical concrete was used instead of asphalt to drastically reduce ongoing maintenance costs. The district can spend well over $100,000 a year addressing asphalt needs and still have a substantial backlog.
“Given the price of concrete we obviously couldn’t put it everywhere we wanted to,” noted Deputy Superintendent Clark Burke.
At Lathrop School, the asphalt work that was needed was done with a new material that — unlike standard asphalt — can be repaired. The district will be monitoring how it holds up to decide whether to use it in future Measure G modernization projects.
There was $10.3 million worth of work done at Lincoln School.
The biggest item was for a new multi-purpose room, new kitchen and office as well as re-orientating the front of the school to Powers Avenue.
That allowed a longer drop off area plus eliminated traffic issues that the start and ending of school created on busy Yosemite Avenue.
Of all the remodeling efforts, the office at Lincoln School by far has the best view of the campus thanks to floor to wall windows that were made possible by it being incorporated into a new multipurpose room. That increased the office staff’s ability to monitor who comes on and off campus substantially compared to the old office that fronted Yosemite Avenue.
Dilapidated portables were replaced with new classrooms. The kndergaten now has a secured play area.
The former cafeteria is being converted into a library and performing arts area.
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