Beaufort Groundbreaking

Members of the Union R-XI Board of Education took part in a groundbreaking ceremony at Beaufort Elementary Wednesday, Dec. 5. The district is building a new gym and making other improvements at the school. The work is being funded by a bond issue passed in early 2018. From left are Superintendent Dr. Steve Weinhold, Aaron Bockhorst, Amy Hall, Christy Eads, Val Steinbeck, Karen Tucker, Dr. Virgil Weideman and Matt Borgmann.      Missourian Photo/Joe Barker.

On the last day it could lock in the prices, the Union R-XI Board of Education approved  four alternate options for the Beaufort Elementary improvement project.

When the district bid the project out in late 2018, Wright Construction, St. Peters, included costs for seven alternate options which covered things like gym flooring, office additions and new light fixtures.

The district was told it had until Jan. 31 before the prices offered by Wright would expire. At the Jan. 30 special board meeting, the board approved four of the seven alternates.

The alternates backed by the board are office additions, a wood floor for the gym, a fireplace accent wall and additional rooftop units. The total cost of the additions is $419,000.

The board opted not to move forward with plans to add acoustic panels, a rubberized flooring for the gym and some lighting options.

There were two flooring options for the gym. Assistant Superintendent Dr. Mike Mabe said the wood floor would hold up better than the alternative version and have a nice long life span.

The other cuts, the acoustic panels and lighting options, could be done later in the process - just not at the cost Wright promised.

The additional rooftop units would replace some older HVAC units and would allow for more options with the zoning heating/cooling system.

The fireplace accent is similar to what is in the plans at the new elementary school and the board wanted to keep buildings consistent.

Superintendent Dr. Steve Weinhold said the goal is to get as much done while the school is closed. He said the school won’t have summer school and the district hopes all the work is finished by summer 2020.

With the alternates, the total project cost for the Beaufort upgrades is now projected to be $3,886,362. That number is lower than the pre-bid projections from October 2018.

Before Wright won the bid for the work, Navigate Building Solutions, the district’s project manager for the work, estimated the total project costs $4,378,205.

Wright Construction was awarded the contract for the school improvement project in November 2018. The work includes both additions and renovations to the elementary school.

The biggest part of the project is building a new gym. The gym, which also will serve as a storm shelter, will allow for existing space at the school to be remodeled into several classrooms, special education rooms, a media center and offices for counselors.

The gym will replace the current gym/cafeteria and designate that room as just a cafeteria. The new gym will be located on the south side of the school.

The improvements are being funded by Prop Wildcats. In April 2018, voters approved a $27 million no-tax increase bond issue for school improvements.

Work has been ongoing at the site since crews started working in late November. The goal is to have the work done in time to start the 2019-20 school year.