Contract approved for new school

Wednesday, June 15, 2011 ~ Updated 11:13 AM

EUREKA SPRINGS -- The Eureka Springs School Board met in a special meeting Friday evening to approve the bid contract for the new high school.

Superintendent Wayne Carr said the board approved a total maximum contract price for bids totalling $9,932,000.

This is a guaranteed price, Carr said. The contracted amount will be paid to Kinco Constructors of Springdale, the construction manager for the project.

Carr said the scope of the project has been modified since the bid opening in April.

The biggest change, he said, is to the Skills building, which will house building trades.

Other changes include the type of roof and side panels to the main school, but the roof line, windows and outside appearance will remain the same.

"The Skills building will be a shell building with insulation and utilities, and the Skills students will finish up the inside," he said. "That will be a neat project, to have the students build their own space. It will have an office."

The building trades students are long-standing state and national competition winners. They will be competing in nationals next week in Kansas City, Mo.

In all, 37 bid specification packages for construction were prepared.

In every case in which a bid was approved, the lowest bid was accepted.

Some bid packages have been removed and will be rebid at a later date, Carr said. Those include landscaping, which garnered two bids at wildly different prices. Others received no bids.

Although Kinco is the construction manager that will oversee the work of all contractors, it also bid on some jobs and won some as the lowest bidder.

Its largest bid, for which it was the only bidder, was for building concrete work, which will cost $1,067,000. That price is included in the total $9.9 million, Carr said.

He said Kinco bidding on parts of the project is not a conflict of interest. Sealed bids were opened at the meeting in April, at which both he and board president Rusty Windle were present, Carr said.

A millage increase of 1.98 mills was approved by voters last year for the new high school. The project is expected to raise around $10.6 million. The remaining funds are slated for architectural and engineering fees, Carr said.

"Actually, the bids came in at about $100,000 over budget, but interest on the revenues will make up the difference," he added.

The school board will hold a groundbreaking ceremony this Thursday at 9 a.m. at the site on Lake Lucerne Road, behind the middle school.

The public is welcome to attend.

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