Middle school update heard

January 22, 2020 Cranberry Local News

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ADAMS TWP — Mars School Board heard a middle school update from John Hays, general manager of construction for Thomas & Williamson Program Management of Pittsburgh, at its Jan. 14 meeting.

Hays also explained the general payment process for the benefit of new board members.

The middle school project has undergone a review of electrical and mechanical systems, according to Hays. Corresponding “punch lists” had been issued to the contractors.

“They have about 30 days to get all that stuff taken care of,” Hays said.

Once the electrical and mechanical punch list items are completed, another inspection will be conducted. If any items remain unfinished, the process will begin again.

Hays assured the board that unsatisfactory punch list work, if there is any, won't financially burden the district.

“The second time we go through the process, we begin charging them for us being there,” Hays said. “They get two bites of the apple. They don't get a third bite.”

Hays said the project architect company Eckles Architecture was busy with other projects over the winter and began working on the middle school last week.

He expected four or five days will be needed to collect data from the architects and submit it to contractors.

“I let everybody here know when the process is done,” Hays said.

Hays discussed a few remaining items that need to be completed in the school.

Specifically, he said casework that's part of a change order for offices and other smaller installations should arrive by the end of the week.

“I'm hoping within 10 days, we have that all done,” Hays said.

Options for cleaning the school's terrazzo flooring are still under investigation. Hays suggested in November the district consider purchasing a diamond blade that would cut through years of wax and dirt build up.

The purchase would be cheaper than hiring someone to clean it, according to Hays.

“I'm still working on pricing,” Hays said.

Addressing questions from the board, Hays explained contract payments are never paid until there's “substantial completion” of work.

“To get paid in full, they have to supply us with warranties,” Hays said.

There are also maintenance and workmanship bonds associated with substantial completion. All three elements need to be properly supplied before full payment is authorized.

“Anything that occurs after that — it could be the next day — we go through the warranty and the bond process,” Hays said.

Hays assured the board all work is thoroughly reviewed before money changes hands. He told the board “shoddy workmanship” would result in withheld payments.

“Nobody's been paid that shouldn't be paid,” Hays said.

Hays told the board he's not happy with the school's current paint job. He's in the process of figuring out how to get repainting done as early as the summer.

Hays anticipates punch list items will be finished by the end of February.

A few change orders are expected to be brought to the board at next month's meeting.

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