Facilities committee meets with Hunt architects, engineers for elementary project
The facilities committee that represents the elementary building project at Bellefonte Area School District met for the first time March 27, where the architect and engineering team from Hunt presented information about the building conditions survey conducted earlier in the month. The team surveyed the district’s four elementary buildings, in addition to reviewing plans for the original construction of the buildings.
In February, the board approved Hunt to conduct the needs assessment of Bellefonte, Benner, Marion-Walker and Pleasant Gap elementary schools, which was done March 12-13 just before the state-mandated school closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
This condition study is the first step of the needs assessment process. The next step, according to Hunt, is a space utilization and educational space planning study, which involves meetings with district administrators to review, in detail, the specific uses of each space within each building, and to point out areas that are under or over utilized.
The goal of this study, also according to Hunt, is to provide data about the condition and space within each building that guides the district in its efforts for future planning of the elementary schools. Proposals include a consolidation of schools, renovation to current buildings and/or a combination.
From these results, the Hunt team will then make recommendations for elementary building options that will be presented to the public for input and feedback. Podcasts and other information discussing the survey and options for the elementary school project will be released regularly throughout April and May.
According to Hunt, the team assessed the elementary schools on multiple levels:
- health and safety concerns
- Americans with Disabilities compliance
- code compliance
- energy efficiencies
- internal and external general building repair
- site improvements
- technology upgrades
- mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems
The district’s facilities committee consists of board members, administrators, various building faculty and community members that represent each elementary school.
“One of our goals is to support Hunt in the contract and be a liaison between them, the district and community,” said school board President Jon Guizar, who is also the committee chairman. “We wanted a good cross-section of (the elementary school areas), so they can bring forth concerns about their building, educational space needs, the functionality of the building, as well as being outspoken in their particular communities, so we get good feedback from the community itself.”
*To see more information about the elementary project, visit this link: Elementary project information. You may also find the latest podcasts that provide further information, here: Elementary project podcasts.
*By Brit Milazzo, public relations director, BASD