Four of the five major Ogden School District construction projects are proceeding as scheduled: Polk Elementary, T.O. Smith Elementary, Horace Mann Elementary and Wasatch Elementary, all part of the $87 million bond proposal passed in 2018.
The fifth project, the Ben Lomond High gymnasium project, has hit another snag.
The $31 million BLHS project, funded mostly by a $26 million lease-revenue bond, was originally set to be completed in time for use at the start this school year.
It was already delayed 19 days due to a wet winter and wet spring last year that over-saturated the soil and delayed foundational work.
According to district support services director Ken Crawford, through a district spokesperson, the new gymnasium project is now looking at either an early October or mid-October completion date due to a damaged wall, caused by wind blowing over some scaffolding, and COVID-19.
The old gym won’t be demolished until students are in the new facility.
All of the district’s projects are at budget except for Wasatch, which has incurred an extra $261,000 cost because of additional work needed on the existing building, according to the district.
Fencing still surrounds Wasatch as its project — construction of a new classroom wing addition — nears completion.
Demolition is well underway for the $30 million project at Polk Elementary School, which is now is almost unrecognizable.
The section of the school that was built in the 1950s has been demolished, while crews on Monday were still in the process of gutting the portion of the school built in the 1920s.
As of now, Polk is expected to be closed the next two school years while students who normally would have attended classes there are sent to Wasatch and Taylor Canyon.
Built in 1927, the gothic revival-style Polk was designed by renowned Ogden architect Leslie Hodgson, who also designed well-known Ogden landmarks like Ogden High School, Peery’s Egyptian Theater, the Ogden Municipal Building and others.
A crane is in place at the new, $25 million Horace Mann Elementary site, located next to the old school. The steel skeleton of the new school is starting to take shape.
Rather than keeping students on-site during construction, which is what’s happening at Horace Mann, the district is going to bus T.O. Smith Elementary students to the vacant Gramercy Elementary building.
T.O. Smith is being replaced at a cost of $25 million.
Students and teachers haven’t been in the Gramercy building since the school closed last year, but the district, per a spokesperson, has been in the process of bringing the building up to speed to be able to accommodate a school schedule again.
The district sold the first $30 million of those 20-year bonds in September 2019 and plans to sell another $30 million round of bonds this fall. The district school board recently has been discussing whether to pay off this next round in 15 or 20 years.
Standard-Examiner reporter Mitch Shaw contributed to this report.