Goshen advances $65M schools project

GOSHEN — The Goshen School Board on Monday voted to hire Weigand Construction as the construction manager on the district’s $65 million referendum project.

According to Kelley Kitchen, director of finance for Goshen Community Schools, the construction manager is responsible for managing the project as the representative for the owner (school corporation) from design through completion.

In May, the board members voted unanimously to hire architectural and engineering firm Barton Coe Vilamaa as the architect of the school corporation’s most recent voter-approved, multimillion-dollar referendum project, which calls for the construction of an intermediate school for Grades 5 and 6, renovations and expansions to the high school as well as renovations to the middle school.

As construction manager, Weigand Construction will act as the liaison between the school district and architects, various trade contractors and local governing agencies for permits and other requirements and other participants involved in the construction project, Kitchen said.

During Monday’s meeting, Superintendent Diane Woodworth said the selection process in choosing the project’s construction manager was a lengthy one that involved an evaluation committee.

The committee was comprised of nine school and project officials, which included Woodworth, Kitchen, school board vice president Bradd Weddell, GCS assistant superintendents Alan Metcalfe and Steve Hope, GCS Director of Facilities Tom Boomershine, Goshen Public Works director Dustin Sailor, architect Brian Bohlander and engineer Michael Lubbenhusen.

Woodworth said initially there were seven applicants for construction manager. This list was narrowed to four companies, who were then interviewed by the committee.

At the end of the interview, the committee narrowed it down to two finalists.

“We agreed that some of the school personnel would do some reference checking with other schools, people we already knew and trusted,” Woodworth said, explaining the process. “And so we did that and then to mull it around again because it was a hard decision. We met again last Friday, and our recommendation is to move forward with Weigand Construction.”

The board upheld the recommendation and approved the request unanimously.

As for the next step, Woodworth said they’ll need to work on the final details in the agreement, which will be presented to the board at a later date.

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