PRESS RELEASE – Condon School District Making Progress Toward New Building
September 3, 2020
It’s been a busy summer at Condon Schools. Our plans and preparations for Covid-19 required a tremendous amount of meetings and effort in order to get to the point where we can open for in-person classes on September 8th. We’ve also worked closely with the City on the sale of the grade school property and the old baseball field. We are in the last stages of finalizing that transaction. In addition, our contractors, Kirby Nagelhout and Gordon’s Heating, have worked diligently through the summer to upgrade the heating system in the high school. The heating system repair is a major project partially funded with matching dollars from Gilliam County, and will help our kids and staff be much warmer this winter.
We are also making progress toward the new building approved by the voters in November 2019. This past Spring we hired an architect to help us through the process – Steele & Associates. Their partner, Scott Steele, is the lead on this project, and has met with our administration multiple times a week. In addition, Mr. Steele and his team have facilitated weekly meetings with our facility committee. Our committee is comprised of Michelle Geer, Superintendent; Scott Nation and Tim Campbell, board members; and Natalie Wilkins and Kayla (Reffett) McIntosh, elementary teachers.
Steele & Associates (Steele) have shared building concepts where our planned indoor play area/gymnasium is built within the classroom structure. They believe we will be able to achieve this approach within our budget, and it will make trips for recess and P.E. much more manageable. You can see a picture of the current rendering here.
Steele has also shared concepts for the floor plan, informed by their experience working on other school buildings in other districts. As can be expected, the committee has had many questions and suggestions. Mrs. Wilkins and Mrs. McIntosh have sought input from the others on staff to make sure we don’t leave any stones unturned. Once the floor plan is closer to final, we will share it with the public.
Lastly, Steele and representatives of the committee have met with the City of Condon to evaluate options for the streets and sidewalks. A traffic study will be performed to assess the impact of the additional traffic in the area. In addition, we will be partnering with the City on a Safe Routes to Schools Grant that, if awarded, will assist with the funding of the additional sidewalks needed in the vicinity of the school. Once finalized, we will share the plan for drop off/pick up at the grade school.
Work will continue on the building plans and design after school begins. We expect to have the plan finalized later this Fall and will go out to bid for construction in the late Winter/early Spring. We will keep the public informed of our progress.