School district seeks volunteers for facilities master planning | SteamboatToday.com

School district seeks volunteers for facilities master planning

— The Steamboat Springs School District is seeking volunteers to serve on at least four committees to help formulate a district master plan.

District administration held a community meeting Wednesday evening to share the results of a demographic study conducted in the fall and encourage community involvement to create a master plan for district facilities.

The district has hired Windsor-based RLH Engineering as a pre-bond engineer to study and form a plan to update district facilities and to potentially facilitate a bond issue to fund capital construction.

The company has worked on similar pre-bond projects with school districts and other entities across the state.

"Over the last several years, we've been showing an increase in enrollment," Superintendent Brad Meeks said. "People are choosing to move here, live here and send their children to school here."

The four committees could begin meeting within a couple of weeks and will research information and discuss district needs throughout a 12-week period.

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The committees are:

Educational sustainability: Assess buildings for educational suitability, including considering size, safety, infrastructure and compliance. The committee will work with an architectural team to develop a plan for how district facilities can improve the delivery of educational programs.

Facility assessment: Work with the director of maintenance, operation and transportation to assess facility conditions and needs, life cycle replacement costs and budgeting.

Finance: Work with the district finance director to assess the financial feasibility of capital construction and other costs for the district.

Demographic: Consider the demographic study and how much space the district really needs now and in the future.

Principal and Partner of RLH Engineering Jeff Chamberlin led most of Wednesday's meeting and urged the few dozen people who attended to get involved.

"In order to do all of this, it takes a team," Chamberlin said.

The district currently is working on a strategic plan to address all future district needs, and Chamberlin said the timing of creating a facilities master plan is ideal.

Following the committee work, the district is hoping a set of options for updating facilities could be presented to the Steamboat Springs School Board as early as July, though Chamberlin said he wouldn't rush the process.

"We'll take whatever time is necessary," Chamberlin said. "I don't believe in short-settling this process."

To reach Teresa Ristow, call 970-871-4206, email tristow@SteamboatToday.com or follow her on Twitter @TeresaRistow