Franklin Schools postpones opening of a new high school due to a buildup of building materials

exploreNew Franklin High School plans receive limited approval

The original end date of the new high school opening was the fall of 2023; and middle school in the fall of 2025.

He said contractors still had to stick to the $66 million budget for the new high school, middle school and bus garage because the district had already closed their construction costs. However, some of the alternatives planned in the project may have to be modified.

Sander said there is a steel backlog that won’t be filled until November 2022 and roofing and excavation costs have increased.

Franklin voters approved the issuance of bonds for new school facilities in November 2020 by a margin of 60% to 40% to provide construction financing for four new buildings and the complete renovation of a fifth, which will convert the existing East Fourth Street high school into a new high school.

Because Franklin participates in the Expedited Local Partnership Program, the state will pay 57% of the cost of the four new classroom buildings that required voters to agree to issue bonds for the local quota. State funding for the new Gerke, Schenck, and Hunter primary buildings is expected to be issued in 2027, according to district and state officials.

The local bond issuance funding will cover the costs of a new high school with professional technology, the renovation of the existing high school for use as a preparatory school for grades 6 through 8 and other site improvements, including a new roof.

It will also cover local initiatives such as the construction of a new bus garage, the relocation of the central office to the new high school building, the installation of gas lines and other amenities, and the demolition of Hampton Bennett School for a new student parking lot.

exploreMassive school building projects underway in the Dayton area

Huber Heights has a major expansion project that ran into a snag due to the sharp increase in projected costs.

The Huber Heights School Board will reassess the planned $7 million expansion project after an unexpected rise in construction expenses pushed up the estimated cost by $1.6 million.

The board has a working session scheduled for Tuesday to discuss how to change the project in order to fit the construction budget, according to Cassie Dietrich, a spokeswoman for the district.

Dietrich said the district is building an addition to Wayne High School and smaller additions to its five elementary buildings.

She said the sharp rise in the expected cost stems from supply chain issues, many of which are the lasting impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and its pressure on the global and national economy.

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“Because of the economy in the situation we are in as a country and globally, the costs of building the project have increased,” she said. “Even from the time we submitted all of our bids, which was in December, the prices of the materials have actually gone up.”

Fairborn schools are also in the midst of a major construction project and are preparing to open their second elementary school since 2020. Treasurer/District Finance Director Kevin Filo said after receiving an $82 million bid to build a new high school in December 2021, inflation hit and the project cost increased by 5.3 million dollars or more than 7%.

“We’ve done some value engineering and are delaying some things,” he said. “We hope to get those back before the building opens in August 2024.”

Philo said that sometime this fall the board will take a look at the budget and find out what can be brought back into the project. He said the district is building a building that will last 50 to 100 years and they are committed to doing it right.

“Inflation is at its highest level in 40 years, and school building is no exception,” Filo said.

However, not all school construction projects face any obstacles. West Carrollton is still building two schools on schedule with no delays reported, according to district officials.

Writers Amy Hancock and Eric Schwartzberg contributed to this report.

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