Detroit Lakes School Board Begins Steps to Move on Voter-Approved Building Projects

Detroit Lakes School Board Begins Steps to Move on Voter-Approved Building Projects Click to Enlarge

DETROIT LAKES, MN--Following the passage of a $49.8 million dollar building bond referendum by voters in Detroit Lakes School District earlier this month, the Detroit Lakes School Board and the architect have laid out a preliminary schedule for the projects at each of the four school facilities in the District.

Architect Brian Berg from Zerr Berg Architects presented a preliminary design and construction schedule Monday night to School Board members and administration. Berg says he's been holding meetings with staff at each school last week and Monday gathering input.

"We've been meeting with multiple groups at each site. I've been talking to these groups and I've been telling them this is not the only time it's just the first time that they're going to have a chance to weigh in and we'll continue to come back to them with iterations of the design. And we want to have their feedback is the reason for having these meetings. We hope the end result here is something that can satisfy as many of the district's needs as possible, obviously with in the budget that we have."

Berg says the goal is to move through the phases of design gathering and laying out details for each building with hopes of a more solid plan prior to the holidays in December.

Berg said the real "meat" of the scheduling will be drawing up the construction documents for each school project, which, according to the schedule he laid out Monday will overlap between the end of December and May. He says the first project to go through the process will be Rossman with the state review and bid process. With construction beginning in July. That project consists of adding more kindergarten rooms, more gym space, eliminating the temporary classrooms and keeping the green space for outside play.

There are renovation projects slated for each of the four schools in the District: Rossman Elementary, Roosevelt Elementary, the Middle School and the High School. The High School has the largest piece of the pie for projects at $27 million as it will get a new wing for the freshman Academy among other upgrades. Monday's project schedule overview indicated that construction will take place over two summers. The hope is to complete the all the projects by the 2020-2021 school year--which may also affect the school calendars, school start- and end-dates, for the next two school years. It's possible the school year will begin a week before Labor Day and end in Mid-May the first year and possibly start a week after Labor day the following year. The school calendars have yet to be laid out.

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