Truckee High gets $3 million facelift | SierraSun.com

Truckee High gets $3 million facelift

Renée Shadforth

Seen through muddied plastic, Jim Wheeler holds a hose while Claudio Antonio sprays a gypsum-based fire retardant on the ceiling of a Truckee High School classroom. Both are from Oakdale's Brunk Industries.

The second thing students at Truckee High who drive to school might notice on their first day back is the east driveway. What was once an off-road adventure with deep pot holes will be smooth asphalt.The first thing student drivers will do, however, is shell out $5 to park on campus. The new parking permit process will be in place for the 2004-05 school year as part of overall Tahoe Truckee High School modernization project.Because of the footprint of the new 7,000-square-foot cafeteria and future gymnasium, there will be less parking spaces, and permits will be necessary to regulate the number of students driving.”If every kid drives, there’s a shortage of parking,” said Rob Koster, co-project manager for the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District. “They would need to start paving a lot more area.”Truckee High administrators were unavailable at press time to provide information on the permits and how many permits will be available.Modernization

The modernization includes new wall coverings, doors, windows, ceilings, energy-efficient lighting and mechanical systems – including fresh air circulation – in the east wing’s 20 classrooms. All teaching spaces in the east wing will be ready for students when school starts Sept. 7, but there may be some construction, Koster said.”There are going to be some things that aren’t done when students get back,” he said, adding that there may be some plywood over windows.Restrooms will be updated to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. New fire sprinklers will be added to the entire campus. Student safety locks – a response to the Columbine High School shootings – will be added to classrooms to allow teachers to secure doors from the inside.The $3 million east wing modernization is a complicated project for the time frame BRCO Constructors, out of Loomis, Calif., had for completion, Koster said.”Typically a $3 million project takes six or 10 to 12 months,” he said. “For the amount of work, it’s a short schedule, but we’ll be ready for school.”Measure C funds covered 20 percent of the modernization project; 80 percent is paid for with state matching funds available to schools updating their facilities.

Contractors also dug up asphalt on the east side of campus to install a larger water line for fire hydrants.Cafeteria and multi-use buildingOnce cafeteria construction is complete this winter, the old cafeteria will be cleared out and turned into science laboratories.The new $3 million cafeteria, also done by BRCO Constructors, is paid for with Measure C funds. The building will have the capacity to seat 500 students for an assembly and 300 students for lunch. It is designed to be used as an exercise room and house the wrestling program. The building will have a student union atmosphere, according to the school’s facilities department Web site.The gymnasium project should go out to bid in winter 2005.

New middle school updateThe portables at the new Alder Creek Middle School might not be ready in time for the first day of school, Koster said.In the spring the school district decided to house the 2-year-old portable classrooms from the bankruptcy estate of the defunct Prosser Creek Charter School rather than moving the 10-year-old portables from Sierra Mountain Middle School.The district will see a greater return from the state – to the tune of $1.2 million more – because it spent $313,164 to purchase eight two-year-old portable classrooms and one toilet building from Prosser Creek. The newer portables have to be adjusted for additional snow load enforcement. Koster said he expects the portables should be ready in the first few weeks of school.Middle school administrators and those involved in construction will meet the first week of August to create a contingency plan to determine where middle school students will attend class until the portables are complete, Koster said.By the time Alder Creek opens its doors for the 2004-05 school year, the school district will have committed approximately $31 million to the project, $7.2 million of which will come from state grants.Most of the funding for the new middle school comes from Measure C, a $35 million bond passed in the March 1999 election.