Old schools come down as new campuses going up

One of the surest signs construction of new school buildings in Big Spring is nearing completion is the campuses they are replacing are about to be demolished.Big Spring Independent School District trustees are expected to approve bids for the demolition of Washington and Marcy elementaries when they hold their monthly meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday in the high school board room.Two other elementary campuses (College Heights and Moss) were demolished prior to the start of construction in 2011. The old Goliad campus had been scheduled for for the wrecking ball, but officials have decided to keep the building intact, at least for now.Overall, $735,000 in voter-approved bond money has been budgeted for demolition of the elementary campuses, said Debbie Green, BSISD business manager.Asbestos abatement and demolition at Marcy and Washington is expected to start almost immediately after students are dismissed for summer vacation May 25, said Wayland Pierce, who is overseeing the construction projects for BSISD.“School district personnel will begin moving furniture out of those buildings the Saturday morning after classes are dismissed and abatement work will begin the following Monday,” Pierce said. “Abatement and demolition will be done a wing at a time — once the abatement workers are done with one wing, they'll move on to another, and the demolition crews will be right behind them … We figure a four-week window for demolition to be completed.”Four new elementary campuses — Washington, Marcy, Moss and Goliad — are on schedule to be ready for students by the first day of classes for the 2012-2013 school year, officials said.Construction at Washington, Marcy and Goliad is about 90 percent finished, while Moss is about 80 percent complete, Pierce said.“The schools themselves will be ready and open, barring some unforeseen circumstance,” Pierce said. “Some landscaping and parking lot work may still need to be done by the time the new school year starts, but everything else will be completed … (Contractor) Lee Lewis has no qualms about us being open on time. He just doesn't see any issue with that.”Completion date for the four new campuses is set for July 1, Pierce said.In other business Thursday, trustees will consider:• Approval of the Howard County Tax Collection budget for 2012-2013.• An agreement for auditing services.• A resolution authorizing the purchase of unimproved real property.• Employment recommendations.