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DeKalb School District 428 OKs bid for Clinton Rosette HVAC project; other work postponed

DeKALB – Although a decision on two bids for heating, ventilation and air-conditioning projects in DeKalb School District 428 buildings was postponed, a bid for a Clinton Rosette Middle School ventilation system project was approved during Tuesday’s board meeting.

During board meetings in December and January, members sought bids for HVAC projects at Lincoln Elementary School, Huntley Middle School and Clinton Rosette.

Batavia-based Aires Consulting Inc. performed a study on Clinton Rosette last year that showed seven underground classrooms experienced humidity issues, and a new air system was recommended for these rooms.

DeKalb-based One Source Mechanical Inc. was the low bid with $347,400. The board unanimously approved this bid. This project will be funded with tax increment financing dollars and operations and maintenance funds.

At Lincoln, which is the last district school to be without an air-conditioning system, a bid was approved from DeKalb Mechanical, totaling $1,134,000 for the replacement of the school’s boiler system and piping and the installation of a chiller. Since the school’s boiler system contained asbestos in its insulation, there also was a separate bid to remove the material, which can cause lung cancer.

Indiana-based Environmental Assurance LLC was the low bidder for the asbestos abatement at $33,744, roughly a quarter of the project’s projected cost of $122,000.

Director of Facility Operations Tammy Carson said she was informed by the architect and engineer of the project that since the board did not approve this bid Tuesday, the project could not be completed this summer.

These projects would have been paid for with funds from the school’s life-safety and operations and maintenance budgets. The board unanimously approved postponing a ruling on them.

Huntley Middle School sought to install air conditioning in the building’s West Wing, which includes two floors of classrooms, two media center classrooms and one classroom near the upstairs locker rooms. Dunlap-based Commercial Mechanical Inc. was the lowest responsible bidder for this project at $547,000, nearly $100,000 more than budget.

There also were a series of alternate bids to install air conditioning in various parts of the school, which were recommended to be rejected by district administration.

Carson said that since the board unanimously postponed a decision on the bid, the contract would not be completed this summer.

She added that since an air conditioning project is not a matter of life and safety, other projects next year may take priority.

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