Re-1 considers $86 million bond
GLENWOOD SPRINGS Roaring Fork School District board members and administrators are making progress on plans to improve, remodel and build new schools and district buildings.Nearly 75 percent of the school districts existing school buildings are more than 30 years old and need major repair, retrofitting, or replacement, according to a facilities master plan drafted by district administrators, board members, parents and staff. The district would need voters to approve an estimated $86 million bond issue to finance the projects in Glenwood Springs, Carbondale and Basalt.The $86 million figure is a working number and not necessarily what the district will ask voters to approve when the issue goes to a vote, said Re-1 superintendent Fred Wall. First, a financial consultantTo move the pre-bond process along, district administrators have hired Dain Rauscher, a financial consulting firm with offices in Denver.A financial consultant is key in planning for bond issues, said Wall. Dain Rauscher principal Nate Eckloff will work with the district office and with the underwriting firm, Wells Fargo Public Finance and Stifel Nicolaus & Co., an investment banking firm, in pre-bond planning. Wall said Eckloff and the district will go back to parent groups and each schools accountability committee to ask what they think are the districts most pressing needs.RFPs for construction manager, architectural firmOn Wednesday, Roaring Fork School district board of education members approved sending out requests for proposals, or RFPs, to hire a construction manager and an architectural firm, also to assist with pre-bond issues. Wall said he anticipates RFPs will first go out for a construction manager, or owners representative. Those should go out by the end of March, Wall said. The board wants an owners representative, since we need someone working on behalf of the district to provide their experience and their inside knowledge of architecture and construction. We need someone who has the districts best interest in mind to help us with those decisions. Following the construction manager coming on board, the district will submit an RFP for an architectural firm to look at all of the districts building plans. Community inputWall said once a construction manager is in place, that person can help the district choose an architecture firm.And after that, well be able to begin working with communities, Wall said. Well be holding design charrettes so people can work with us and will get an idea of what these buildings will look like. District officials are planning repeated efforts to get public input before finalizing the proposal they will take to voters.The board isnt certain when it will take the bond issue to a vote, Wall said. It could be this November, or in 2005.Contact Carrie Click: 945-8515, ext. email@example.com
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