School renovations underway

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BPSB receives update on new, ongoing projects

Construction and renovations to several Bossier Schools are well on their way, some of which are ahead of schedule and under budget.

The Bossier Parish School Board received an update from project officials Thursday night that included a look at what is done and what is still to come in the weeks ahead. To date, the Bossier School System has spent $8 million of the $210 million bond money allocated for construction and renovation projects.

Clarence Babineaux, project manager, said renovations at Bossier High School were completed in early August and construction is currently underway at Carrie Martin Elementary in Plain Dealing Babineaux said those renovations are on schedule and set to be completed in December.

W.T. Lewis Elementary’s new three 4-room wings are one-third of the way complete and about $14,000 under budget, Babineaux said. That project is scheduled to be completed in the summer of 2014.

The Kingston Road area elementary school has a bid date of Oct. 24. The new school is projected to cost just under $1.2 million and completed in 2015.

Bids for the new Bossier Parish School for Technology and Innovative Learning (BPSTIL) will be advertised in December and a completion date has tentatively been set for the fall of 2015.

Haughton Middle Sschool bids will open in the spring and project officials have moved the opening date from 2017 to 2016.

Renovations to Airline High School are set to begin in mid-2014, a year earlier than originally projected. One addition to the project is a new elevated covered sidewalk that will link buidings together.

By elevating a new sidewalk, Babineaux said foot traffic through the school will flow more freely than the school’s current design. Also, the original design for the science labs has changed to now become a 10 lab/classroom combo.

Airline’s new campus, which Babineaux projected to be completed in four to five years, is designed to house 2,000 students. Superintendent D.C. Machen said Airline’s current enrollment stands around 1,700 students.

School Board President Eddy Presley said he predicts that number to reach the 2,000 mark in the next three to four years. Keith Norwood, Supervisor of Planning and Construction for Bossier Schools, said the school system is aware of several additional residential areas that have yet to be constructed in the Parish.

However, only time will tell what kind of impact it will have on the Bossier School System.

“We are fully aware that we will have needs to address after this 10 year period, but it is still too early to plan for those,” Norwood told board members.

Norwood said milestone dates and progress reports from construction projects will be presented to the school board as they become available.