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Several schools get a makeover
Hundreds of Valley students will walk into schools they
probably won't recognize, thanks to construction bonds voters
passed in previous years.
Snoqualmie Valley School District's Fall City and North Bend
Elementaries, and Riverview School District's Carnation
Elementary all went through major renovations that began last
spring and fall.
Last week, students and staff at Carnation Elementary walked
the halls of the new "Millennium Wing" and ooh'd and
aah'd at the transformation to the section that was originally
built in 1960.
"This is creating a lot of excitement," said
Principal Jim Jordan. "Everyone was saying things like, `Oh
my, look at this."
The $1.1 million project paid for a new roof, classroom
furniture, carpets, additions in the multipurpose room and more.
The most needed improvement, however, was the school's new roof.
"The roof was sloping in to the center and the paint on
the walls was peeling," Jordan said. "We had leaking
problems here for years."
Workers are still lingering at the school, finishing up
several minor adjustments such as installing cabinets and door
locks, and finishing the "punch list."
Crews are also working at Fall City Elementary, which will
delay the school's opening until Sept. 13.
"We're giving the contractor a chance to clean up the
site and haul away the debris, and make it a safer place for the
children," said Rosemary Ziara, the district's business
manager. "The building is going to be beautiful, like new,
and worth waiting for."
The contractor, Columbia Pacific Contractors Inc., was
supposed to have completed the project by Aug. 23 - which could
bring financial penalties to the company.
"We have in our contract `liquidated damages'...so [in
the event of] any additional cost we incur because of delays, we
could go back to the contractor and ask for reimbursement,"
The district has not yet decided how it will handle the delay
with the contractors or its impact on the school calendar. Ziara
said the contractor blamed the lack of adequate numbers of
construction workers to the delay of the project.
"There's so much construction going on in the world
around us, that there's a shortage of laborers," she said.
"And from his perspective, that's been the biggest
Teachers and staff will be allowed back into the classrooms
this week. A temporary office has been set up for Fall City
Elementary at Chief Kanim Middle School for any parents or
community members who need to meet with school officials.
The district wants to discourage anyone from visiting the new
school until its official opening next week, due to dangers of
the construction zone.
On the other side of the Valley, things at North Bend
Elementary are a lot less hectic. The teachers and staff began
moving their items into the school last week and began classes on
Some of the improvements at North Bend Elementary include a
repaved parking area, new music stage in the multipurpose room,
renovations to the library to offer more natural lighting, redone
classrooms, a new roof and more. Geographically, the school's
main office was moved to the front.
There are two more schools in the Snoqualmie Valley School
District that will begin renovations during this school year.
Snoqualmie Middle School's construction will begin in November,
and Snoqualmie Elementary will start renovations in February
2000. Both projects will be finished next September.