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Primary Center needs $20,000 in emergency repairs

Mount Horeb Mail Thursday, August 21, 2008
By Michele kraft

Stopgap measures for the upkeep of the Primary Center continue with the outlay of $20,000 to repair the roof, make the walls of the gym area watertight and replace the rusting doors by the service entrance.

"The whole thing is letting loose, all the way around it," said Director of Buildings and Grounds Bill Kolb at the building, grounds, insurance and transportation meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 12. "We have done little bits and pieces, just to get by, because we didn't know what we were going to do with the building. We thought by now we would be looking at another building. We have to do something. We can't leave it go."

Rolls of rubber will be used by Tremco, the roofing contractor, to repair the roof and waterproof the walls of the gymnasium at the same time. The service doors and their frame are patched with angle iron and will be replaced.

"We have to start putting some money back into that building to maintain it for the next two, three, four years," said Kolb. "One of these days, things are going to just start falling apart. The parapet wall is getting water through the cement block. We have water getting in there, freezing and just blowing out the brick. It's pretty bad."

It is hoped that the cost of these two maintenance projects will come in for less than $20,000.

During discussion of where the money would come from, Superintendent Dr. Wayne Anderson had an answer ready.

"We'd always talked that if we sold Ridgeview," Anderson said, "some of those dollars could go into could go into repair projects."

Though the sale of the Ridgeview road property will not be finalized until January, the money can be allocated from the profits of the sale because it is occurring during this school year.

A motion to approve the spending passed unanimously at the regular school board meeting on Monday, Aug. 18.

While some portions of the building are in need of significant repairs, other portions are ready for 100 years of use. When carpet and asbestos tile was removed from the Primary Center this summer, a terrazzo floor was revealed in portions of the building.

terrazzo floor Kolb called the serviceable terrazzo floor "beautiful," estimating the floor would cost $30 per square foot to replaced. Much of the second floor administration hall floors are terrazzo, a concrete aggregate traditionally made from marble chips. Brass outlines each tile, having served as the forms when the flooring was poured.

Originally developed as a low cost alternative to marble floors, terrazzo is a highly durable surface – so durable that Kolb predicted it would last another 100 years. Terrazzo manufactured today often consists of glass, quartz or quartzite and polymers instead of the marble used in the Primary Center.

The floor was polished and waxed and is now ready for the start of the school year.

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