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The East Greenbush Central School District is developing a new Capital Project that would improve facilities and grounds at all seven schools. The proposed project, which was presented to the Board of Education at its public meeting on Wednesday evening, includes items such as adding air conditioning throughout all five elementary schools, classroom additions for Universal Pre-K, library renovations, new playgrounds, athletic field improvements, new tennis courts at Columbia High School, new and reconstructed sidewalks, and infrastructure improvements at all schools.

The estimated cost for the proposed project is $116 million, but due to state building aid and expiring debt, there would be no additional impact to local taxpayers. It is estimated that the state will reimburse the district approximately 75% of eligible costs for this project ensuring no additional tax burden for district residents.

“The timing of this project is critical as we retire debt within the next two years and look to finance the project by maximizing the availability of state building aid,” said Superintendent Jeff Simons. “Seventy-five cents of every dollar we borrow to fund this project will be paid back to the district from New York State.”

“This project looks to the future, continuing to provide safe, healthy learning environments for our students and importantly, modernizing some of our educational spaces and upgrading athletic facilities for our community,” Mr. Simons continued. “The project is still in the development phase so we want our community members to learn about what we are considering and we are inviting individuals and groups within our community to weigh in.”

Feedback regarding the Capital Project will be solicited at future Board of Education meetings and community forums.

Commencement of the project, if approved by voters, is estimated to begin in 2025 and would include multiple phases.

Resources:

What is a Capital Project?

A capital project is a project to construct either new facilities or make significant, long-term improvements to existing facilities. Capital projects must be approved through a public vote, separate from the annual school budget vote.

Capital Projects are developed from information gathered through a Building Condition Survey which is required for all public school districts every five years by New York State. It includes a review of all occupied school buildings and grounds throughout the district and prioritizes needs for improvement and replacement of aging systems such as roofs and boilers.

The East Greenbush CSD completed its required Building Condition Survey last winter and submitted it to the NYS Education Department in March.

What is included in the proposed Capital Project?

The proposed Capital Project, which is still being developed, includes:

  • Air Conditioning/HVAC in Elementary Schools
    • Spaces are going to be evaluated and AC systems are going to be designed/provided throughout all five elementary schools
    • Replace non-functioning exhaust fans
    • Building management system upgrades (controls)
    • Upgrade or replacement of existing boilers with modern efficient modulating boilers with code required
    • Emergency shutdown and proper make-up air system
  • Athletic Fields/Courts and Other Improvements at Columbia and Goff
    • Columbia
      • Reconstruct tennis courts
      • Reconstruct basketball courts with drainage
      • Add visitor bleachers to turf field
      • Improve drainage for soccer and lacrosse practice fields north of baseball field
      • Grass baseball field improvements with new dugouts
      • Softball field improvements
      • Install new fiber runs from the school to the athletic stadium
      • Install new electronic school sign by the road
      • Replace public address system to integrate with district-wide public address upgrades
      • Provide new sound system and stage lighting for auditorium
      • Replace out of warranty roofing (warranty expires in 2023)
      • Crawlspace vermiculite removal
    • Goff
      • Add multi purpose turf field
      • Add new 6-lane track with turf infield
      • Two new elevated practice fields with drainage near bus garage
      • Gilligan Road softball field improvements
      • Sorensco Baseball Field improvements
      • Reconstruct locker room area to meet current program needs
      • Provide new entrance facade with covered walkway
      • Redesign nurse’s suite and accessible bathrooms for cafeteria use
      • Replace corridor lockers in the building
      • Provide emergency generator (diesel fueled) sized to power the entire building enabling school to serve as community shelter in the event of a widespread community emergency 
    • Genet
      • Level, overseed and top dress two field hockey practice fields
    • Red Mill
      • New softball backstops, core generate field, top dress and overseed
  • Libraries
    • Renovate existing libraries to create media center hubs and spaces for STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) programs and projects and to enhance available community meeting space
  • Elementary School Playgrounds
    • Replace playgrounds at Bell Top, DPS, Green Meadow and Red Mill (Genet playground will be replaced through previous Capital Project)
  • Classroom Additions
    • Add two classrooms to each elementary school for pre-k programs or add 4/5 classrooms to one elementary school and create a pre-k center
  • Interior Spaces – All Schools
    • Selected floor replacement to avoid trip hazard/safety issues
    • Replacement of deteriorated gypsum and tile ceilings
    • Replace non-compliant doors with new HM fire rated doors including accessible hardware
    • Selected bathroom renovations
  • Safety/Security – All Schools
    • Replacement and addition of security cameras and swipe card systems
    • Window and door replacements
    • Exterior wall upgrades – exterior column upgrades and/or replacement
  • Electrical – All Schools
    • Replace existing interior/exterior lighting with LED lights
    • Selected switchgear replacement
    • Replacement of exit/emergency lights
    • Provide exterior connection for portable generator to power buildings
    • Provide new separate electric service for electric bus fleet
  • Hazardous Materials – All Schools
    • Remove remaining vinyl asbestos tile and replace with new Forbo floor tile
    • Remove/abate remaining deteriorated plaster ceiling systems throughout the building – provide new acoustical suspended ceiling systems
  • Plumbing – All Schools
    • Provide reverse osmosis system to remove lead from water
    • Replace plumbing fixtures that have passed their useful life expectancy
    • Replace and/or add drinking fountains including water bottle fillers
    • Replace lead containing plumbing/piping/fittings in portable water system
    • Upgrade/replace interior sanitary/potable/domestic/stormwater systems and lines that contain lead or have passed their useful life expectancy including backflow preventers
    • Provide 140-degree domestic hot water heater and recirculation line/pump
  • Exterior Doors/Weather Protection – Selected Schools
    • Add roof structure over exterior gym doors to prevent ice build-up
    • Replace exterior doors with FRP doors
  • General Site Improvements – All Schools
    • Roadways/sidewalks/parking and drainage upgrades
    • Reconstruct sidewalks and curbs including required ADA accessible walkways
    • Construct a new 8’ wide walkway to connect buildings/parking/fields/playgrounds
    • Replace selected storm structures (culvert/drywell/catch basins, etc.)
    • Connect sanitary and storm management systems to municipality lines
    • Upgrade drainage system along perimeter of buildings
    • Replace deteriorated concrete pads at doors
  • Buildings and Grounds
    • Replace in ground gasoline tank with above ground tank
    • Replace overhead doors (5 each)
    • Reconstruct accessible compliance toilet room
  • Transportation Department
    • Provide new separate electric service for electric bus fleet
    • Provide emergency generator (diesel fueled) sized to power the entire building
    • Replace two above ground lifts

What is the timeline for the proposed Capital Project?

The Board of Education will continue to review the details of the proposed project, consider public input and receive updates at future board meetings. A public vote on the Capital Project is tentatively scheduled for May 21, 2024, which is the same day as the school budget vote.

  • March 2023 – Building Condition Survey submitted to NYSED
  • Summer 2023 – Pre-referendum cost estimating
  • Fall 2023 – Selection of new architect and construction manager following public Request for Proposals
  • Fall 2023 – Gathering input from stakeholders and review of financial considerations
  • March 2024 – Special BOE Meeting to Adopt Wording of Proposition
  • May 21, 2024 – Public Vote on Capital Project

Watch the Capital Project Presentation