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Construction Updates


Building Project

I want to thank the community for passing the referendum. Supporting the building project was an essential piece that should assist in keeping Black Hawk School District viable for many years to come.

We have started a process that has not been done at Black Hawk in 27 years, construction. Actually, if you consider the demolition portion of the project, I am not sure it has ever been done before this time in the Black Hawk School District.

In order to explain where we are at this point I will review some key shifts as we have progressed to this point of the project. The project was originally bid out with bids due in December. Unfortunately, due to unprecedented inflation the lowest bid was three million over. The project was scaled back and then rebid with bids due in February. The bids still came in higher than expected. The Board then made difficult decisions and the bid was granted to Empire Construction. At that point the project was projected to start in April.

Unfortunately, another significant setback occurred when Empire Construction was unable to complete, or even start our project for that matter. At that point the Old Republic Surety stepped in as the bonding company for Empire Construction. They put the project back out to bid to the companies who had bid in February. Eventually the Old Republic chose Sjostrom and Sons to complete the project. It took a few months for the bidding and negotiation process to take place.

The construction process is no longer considered a phased approach. The new addition will be constructed with two portions of the building being demoed at different times. The intent is to have clearance for occupancy by the beginning of the 2024-2025 school year. There will likely be some “punch list” items left to complete after the beginning of the new school year (2024-2025).

For those who have been by the site, you can currently see the new parking area has been significantly completed. Light poles and the final layer of blacktop need to be installed. The footings and foundation work has started.  The new water supply has been brought in to the building, but is not yet functional. The temporary offices have been constructed and are occupied.

Some key components of the project are planned to occur in the following order.  The old office space will be demoed over Christmas break. Work on constructing the new space, classrooms and offices, will be a continuous effort until the work is completed. At the end of the current school year the 1921 portion of the building will be vacated and demoed. The new shed will be constructed in the spring.

I am confident upon completion of the project the students, staff and community will be pleased with the new learning space and functionality of the project.

Willy Chambers