Christ The Redeemer resolution on school construction adopted by School Board Association | DrumhellerMail
Last updateFri, 14 Jun 2024 6pm

Christ The Redeemer resolution on school construction adopted by School Board Association

    After the difficulties faced by Christ the Redeemer School Division in completing the new St. Anthony’s School, the division is hoping to eliminate similar problems for other school projects in the future.
    Christ the Redeemer School Division presented a resolution to the Alberta School Board Association to review the approval process for school construction. The division proposed to specifically look at a prequalification bid process as well as a review of the low bid requirement of Alberta Infrastructure for the construction of new schools.
    The resolution was adopted by the School Board Association as policy at their fall general meeting.
    Last fall construction of the new school ground to a halt when the school division parted ways with Bayview Contractors. In January of 2011 Foothills School Division ran into trouble with the same contractor.
    Christ the Redeemer has since went to bond and hired Cana Construction to complete the job. The school is slated to open this spring.
    “We felt very strongly we needed to do different things so others wouldn’t have to face a similar situation,” said Christ the Redeemer School Division superintendent Michael O’Brien.
    According to a backgrounder on the resolution, completion of contracts awarded for school construction through the current approval process (including contractor prequalification and the requirement to select the low bid) has been problematic for some jurisdictions. Alberta Education prequalifies contractors who are bonded and insured, who then bid on school construction contracts.
    School jurisdictions must then accept the lowest bid from a prequalified contractor.
    Some jurisdictions have experienced significant time delays and cost overruns due to non-performance by contractors who were prequalified but not able to fulfill all requirements of the contract.
    The new St. Anthony’s School was budgeted for about $13.5 million. O’Brien said that due to delays caused by difficulties with the contractor, the project will come in over budget, though since work is still being done he does not have a figure. The overrun will be made public.
    “We are over budget, but that is the natural outcome when you move from one contractor to another; you incur more architectural fees as the project goes on, there are more consulting fees,” said O’Brien. “We are working through this with the government right now…our modus operandi with ourselves, and Alberta Infrastructure and Alberta Education is to work together on the project.”

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