Grant Elementary Construction Delayed
You may recall that the last bond vote approved funding to remodel Grant Elementary. Last week we opened bids from contractors hoping to approve the project. What we found is that at current pricing, we are unable to afford the project. Bids were submitted at nearly 40% more than what we have budgeted. At this time, we cannot, in good conscience or as good stewards of taxpayer money, accept this project. Grant Elementary construction will be delayed.
Our plan, moving forward, is to bid Grant Elementary, the Performing Arts Center (PAC) and Beezley Springs renovations in the summer of 2023. Although construction will be delayed, our community will benefit as this delay allows Columbia Ridge and Ephrata Middle School gymnasium to finish, significantly reducing the impact to gym space that would have occurred if Grant Elementary, the PAC gym, Columbia Ridge and EMS gym were all unavailable at the same time.
We are unbelievably saddened that we are not able to proceed with construction as planned. We remain true to our promise to deliver a new/remodeled and improved Grant Elementary. Any strategy to trim the project down 40% would create a project that is not equitable, and/or will not meet the standards set for an elementary school in Ephrata. We will deliver an improved Grant Elementary when we are financially able to do so - we are hoping for the summer of 2023.
Superintendent, Ephrata School District