Officials from Elder Demolition, of Spokane/Portland, which won the bid to demolish A.E. Wright Elementary school, walked through the school Monday afternoon to review the work that needs to be done to remove hazardous materials.
Also on the walk-through was Carl Berman, a representative of IRS Environmental, a sub-contractor, who will do the abatement of asbestos and other hazardous materials.
Elder’s project manager, Justin Arrand, said the abatement will take place in two stages. The south wing of the building will get hazardous materials removed first, then while that wing is being demolished the other wing will see the abatement of materials.
Elder was awarded the contract by the school board earlier this month. Elder bid $371,095 -- about $49,000 over the official estimate -- yet $47,000 under the next lowest bidder.
Senior architect Laurence Rose, of Design West, told the board that Elder Demolition planned to grind up concrete at the site and store it there for later fill on the K-12 project, thereby saving the district a considerable amount of money.
The second lowest bid came from Cates and Erb, an Omak firm, at $418,569.
Architect Cameron Golightly, also of Design West, the Pullman firm doing the drawings, told board members that Elder Demolition had wanted to start the week of July 23; however, the starting date has been changed to July 30. Elder will have 75 days to complete the razing of Wright and get the site ready for construction and will need to be finished by Oct. 13.
School officials stated that they were hopeful that 75 percent of the building would be recyclable.
Superintendent Dennis Carlson said the Town of Coulee Dam has issued the district the necessary permit to demolish. While there have been some delays in the demolition part of the project, Carlson said, “we are still well within our January, 2013 construction bid target date.”
The firm not only has to demolish the building and clean up surrounding asphalt and concrete, but has the major task of abating hazardous materials such as asbestos.
Prior to bidding, about a dozen interested parties showed up to inspect the building and review the hazardous materials report from Fulcrum, a consulting firm for the district.
Only three general contractors made official bids on the project.
The building is laced with asbestos, evidenced by the report from Fulcrum who punched inspection holes in the walls to determine what hazardous materials were in the school. This report was made available to bidders.
Officials have stated that the abatement areas will be sealed off so particles will not escape the site.
Harry Bessette, of the Colville Tribes TERO office, was also present for the walk-through and received assurances that a number of tribal members will be employed.
IRS representative Berman said that several tribal members are now being trained in asbestos abatement and that he planned to interview them Tuesday. They would be available as soon as they receive certification.