The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
Contractor picked for Orange High
BY DAN McFARLAND
A Culpeper company has been chosen to complete the second phase of improvements to Orange County High School later this year.
After receiving four bids on the project to renovate and reconfigure four classrooms into two large science labs with an adjoining preparation room, the School Board voted unanimously to accept the lowest bid—slightly less than $350,000—from Bayard Construction LLC.
The two-phased improvement project was aimed at solving two existing problems at the high school—overcrowding, and a shortage of science lab space. Orange County High School is projected to be operating at its full capacity of 1,531 students next year, and enrollment is projected to rise to 1,539 and 1,566 for the two following years.
The first phase of the improvement contract was awarded to Mobile Modular Corp. in early January with a bid of just under $223,000. It calls for the company to provide, deliver and install five late-model pre-owned modular classroom units next to the sidewalk in front of the high school.
The modular units will provide substitute classroom space while the other classrooms are being renovated, and will provide increased capacity for the school afterwards. Installation and preparation of the modular classrooms is expected to take some 20 weeks.
The classroom renovation is expected to take 32 weeks to complete. Because some overlap in the phases is possible, the entire project should be complete in about 40 weeks. School officials hope the project will be finished by the start of school next fall.
In October, the Orange County Board of Supervisors approved an $800,000 appropriation for the project. The School Board’s original budget estimate for the total project was $850,000.
The total cost for the project will include some items outside the scope of the two contracts already awarded, including such things as technology, moving furniture and architect’s fees. However, with contracts for both phases coming in slightly below original estimates, Doug Arnold, coordinator of Facilities and Maintenance, anticipates the entire project may come in under budget.