- Scottsdale Unified School District
- Building Services
Building Services - March 2024Posted by SUSD Communications on 3/1/2024
68th Street Property
Last month, the SUSD Governing Board gave the administration the go-ahead to begin the process of developing the 68th Street property, the site of the former Tonalea Elementary School, as a youth sports complex and community resource.
A community input meeting is scheduled for Thursday, March 7th at 6 p.m. in the Lecture Hall at Coronado High School. We look forward to receiving your thoughts.
The Heating and Cooling Challenge, a.k.a., the “Shoulder Months”
There are a few months during the year, especially in Arizona, that it’s cold enough in the morning for heating and warm enough in the afternoon for cooling. It is not unusual during the months of February and March for us to experience a 45˚ early morning and a 78˚ late afternoon. This same thing tends to happen in the fall, during October and November.
These months are considered the “shoulder months,” and during these months, it can be challenging to regulate our facilities’ indoor temperatures to the satisfaction of all occupants. Our district standard set points are 68˚ for heating and 76˚ for cooling, which translates to if it’s cooler than 68˚ in a classroom, the heat will come on and if it’s warmer than 76˚ , the cooling will come on. Anything in between, there is neither heating or cooling, and that’s where the challenge begins, because when it’s 69˚ degrees outside but its 73˚ inside, that space feels warm. It is not at all unreasonable to have classrooms or any workspace, for that matter, between 68˚ and 76˚ , but to some occupants, when the indoor space gets closer to 76˚ than 68˚ , it is uncomfortable.
Please bear in mind that the indoor fans in our AC units run continuously throughout the school day to bring in fresh air, as required by law. Our school HVAC systems do operate differently than what most people are accustomed to in their homes, but it is our goal to maintain a level of comfort that is acceptable to most building occupants while maintaining a responsible balance with our utility costs. As we experience the upcoming change of seasons and see more consistent (higher) temperatures, we’ll also see more consistent temperatures in our indoor spaces that will be comfortable to most, right in the 76˚ range.
Building Services February 2024Posted by SUSD Communications on 2/1/2024
Desert Canyon Elementary School’s Outdoor P.E. Improvement Project kicked off on January 8th and has seen great progress to date. The project includes an enormous steel shade structure that will cover the equivalent of two basketball courts. This structure, along with a new restroom/storage building will support outside P.E. activities, whole school assemblies, and community events. The current construction schedule has this new venue opening in late May, just in time for end-of-the-school-year celebrations.
68th Street and Oak Street (the former Tonalea Elementary School campus)
At its February 13th Regular Meeting, a proposal will be presented to the SUSD Governing Board, requesting that it authorize the District’s administration to finalize plans to improve the property as a multi-use, youth sports facility. This effort has been a long time in the making, and we are anxious to get the Governing Board’s approval to move this work along.
SUSD’s Building Services Department is always looking for help. It is not uncommon for the department to have 15-25 vacant, full-time positions, waiting for the right candidate to come along. From entry-level grounds and custodial positions to journeyman-level trades people, HVAC, electrical, and plumbing positions are available now. Please visit our jobs website or tell a friend: SUSD’s Building Services Department would love to talk to you about your future!
Building Services - January 2024Posted by SUSD Communications on 1/1/2024
With the wrap-up of the 2016 Bond program, we are transitioning the title of this blog entry to tell you about SUSD’s hardworking Building Services department.
Ensuring our schools provide the best indoor and outdoor facilities to support the district’s world-class, future-focused learning is a never-ending, and sometimes around-the-clock, mission. The men and women of Building Services are dedicated to their work.
Now Everyone Knows!
In case you are not aware, SUSD athletic fields are among the best in the Valley, state and country!
Pioneer Athletics, suppliers of field paint, think so highly of the softball field at Desert Mountain High School that they are featuring it as a 2024 Field of Excellence in the company’s 2024 calendar. The field’s beauty is the work of former Grounds person Ken Westray and support staff (Ken is the SUCCESS teacher at Pima Elementary this year). No wonder Desert Mountain won its first 5A state championship last spring!
The high school field gets double duty, too, as it is what the Mountainside Middle School softball team calls its home field during the fall season. Turning the field around from fall use to get winter rye grass established in time for the high school season is always challenging, but our Grounds team makes that magic happen every year!
Ideas for sprucing up campuses to extend student learning are easy. It’s the turning them into reality that’s the hard part! So, we want to pay special tribute Yavapai Elementary Facilities Supervisor Sean Spotleson and Grounds Lead Joe Arteca, who’ve been trimming back trees and redoing the school’s irrigation system in recent months to accommodate a new container garden. Chaparral HS had a hand in the project, too, providing upcycled tables and ground covering. The Thunderbirds say THANK YOU, one and all!
Building Services Update - January 2024Posted by SUSD Communications on 1/1/2024
Read more at The SUSD Source
Bond and Facilities Update - December 2023Posted by SUSD Communications on 12/1/2023
The final phase of the Pueblo Elementary School rebuild is to reestablish a natural turf playfield for the students and community. It is often challenging to flip-flop a field and old buildings and reestablish turf. McCarthy and its subcontractor, DTR Landscaping, have been screening rock from the soil for more than a week to prepare the area for hydroseeding. We anticipate that the hydroseeding of winter rye grass will happen at the end of next week, the week of December 4th. If Mother Nature cooperates, Pueblo students will have a beautiful stand of green grass to greet them when they return to campus after winter break.
The Visioning Committee and Desert Canyon Elementary School (DCES) staff are very anxious to see their outdoor P.E. improvement project come to fruition. The SUSD Governing Board will have the opportunity to review and approve the Bond expenditure for this long-awaited project at its December 12th Regular Meeting. The DCES project includes a large, metal shade canopy, exterior restrooms, and P.E. storage space. Should the Governing Board decide to authorize this expenditure, we anticipate that construction would begin almost immediately. The expected completion date for this project would be May 2024. It would be the final, major project funded by the 2016 Bond program.
During winter break, Cochise Elementary School will see a complete flooring replacement project begin. Vinyl composite tile (VCT) will be removed from areas such as the cafeteria and P.E. space and replaced by Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT). The benefit of LVT is that it helps reduce M&O costs because it doesn’t have to be stripped and waxed each year to maintain its luster. LVT has a wood-plank look that requires no waxing. All of the carpeted classrooms at Cochise will be getting new carpeting and integral walk-off mats will be placed at every doorway to help keep the dirt at the door.
Our Building Services team would like to take a moment to thank our community for the continued support and wish each and every one of you a wonderful holiday season.
NEW Pueblo Elementary School Ribbon-Cutting CeremonyPosted by SUSD Communications on 11/1/2023
Pueblo, home the district’s Spanish dual language immersion program, is the sixth, and last, Scottsdale Unified School District (SUSD) campus to be rebuilt using voter-approved 2016 Bond Funds, at a cost of approximately $25 million. The original Pueblo opened as a K-8 school at its current, 15.6-acre location in the fall of 1971; renovations were undertaken in 1986 and 2002.
The school’s three, new structures replace six slump block and concrete tilt-up buildings and their aged-out HVAC, electrical and roofing systems. The site had serious flooding and challenging student drop-off/pick-up traffic issues that have been corrected with the rebuild.
Taking the input of a Visioning Committee comprised of a diverse array of stakeholders that started meeting in June 2021, the design team at BWS Architects and Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR) McCarthy Building Companies worked together to bring about a state-of-the-art campus that will serve the Pueblo community for many, many years to come.
The SUSD Governing Board approved the design plan in June 2022; construction began immediately thereafter.
Bond – October 2023Posted by SUSD Communications on 10/1/2023
Principals, School Staff, Students, and Parents:
The Building Services Department works tirelessly to maintain our district facilities. Unfortunately, students are making choices in our restrooms that make those efforts seem like they are never enough. Hanover Survey results have told us that we need to do more to keep our bathrooms clean and ready for use. The Student Advisory Board, comprised of student leaders of our five high schools, often provides feedback that students find bathrooms locked, vaping is out of control, locks are broken, and the bathrooms smell.
While I will admit and accept responsibility for any bathrooms that aren’t clean and are out of toilet paper, paper towels or soap, there is little that our Building Services team members can do about restrooms being locked because of vandalism and vaping. Here are just a few examples of the poor choices being made that result in our placing bathrooms out of service:
The choices being made by some of our students affect hundreds of students each and every day. And these pictures tell only a small portion of the story. Time and money spent on these incidents translate into time and money that isn’t being devoted to other areas that can benefit our Scottsdale students in so many other, better ways.
While supply chain issues are finally starting to become a thing of the past, the age of some of these partitions and bathroom accessories, in some cases, is such that the parts are no longer available. A broken door lock or a panel that has been ripped off its hinges becomes a complete bathroom-partition system replacement. A 20-minute repair turns into a 2-day repair, and that’s after the parts are received, weeks after they have been ordered.
I am not writing this to hide behind excuses: I’m asking for your help. Please, talk to your students, your children and your peers, and discourage this behavior in our school restrooms. It has become an epidemic, and it is not sustainable. We all want the very best for our Scottsdale students. Please help us provide it.
SUSD Building Services
Bond - September 2023Posted by SUSD Communications on 9/1/2023
The month of August … the first few weeks of school … wrapping up summer projects … dealing with the extreme heat. Bring on September, please!
September begins with some time to reflect on all that was accomplished during the summer and then quickly turn to planning, planning, and more planning.
Thanks to our Scottsdale Community and its trust in us, the District Additional Assistance (Capital) override that was passed last fall has added a host of new projects to our long list of things to do. From new shade structures and small landscape improvements to minor building improvements and new student furniture, this first year of the Capital override will see just over $2.5 million spent on our campuses.
Additionally, we will finalize plans for the last of the 2016 Bond projects on our list. Cochise, Sequoya, Anasazi, Cheyenne, Desert Canyon, Laguna, and Redfield will each be the beneficiary of some campus beautification projects.
Lastly, our team continues to work with the Arizona Department of Administration (ADOA) and its Division of School Facilities (formerly the Arizona School Facilities Oversight Board) to execute nearly $22 million worth of Building Renewal Grants for Saguaro, Chaparral, Tonalea, and Mohave roofing and weatherization projects. Our team is small, efficient, and always looking to do great things for our Scottsdale students and staff!
In our October update, we look forward to sharing our upcoming projects in greater detail.
Bond – August 2023Posted by SUSD Communications on 8/1/2023
Our main focus during Summer 2023 has been wrapping up the full rebuild of Pueblo Elementary School, begun just over a year ago, and completing new additions and renovation projects at Tavan Elementary School.
The brand new Pueblo will be ready to welcome its Dust Devil students next week, when the new school year begins. Teachers and staff have been moving in during the past week or so, and the new campus is already getting rave reviews. Our design team at BWS Architects and Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR) McCarthy Builders worked together closely to bring about a terrific new campus that will serve the Pueblo community for many, many years to come. The original Pueblo opened in 1971.
Over in the Arcadia Learning Community, additions and renovations to portions of the Tavan campus give it a nearly new appearance. Our SPS+ Architects and CORE Construction CMAR design team created and implemented an impressive plan that included:
- the construction of a new building to house art and gifted classrooms
- the remodeling of the former administration building to bring early childhood programs back on the Tavan campus from across the street, eliminating the need for the school’s youngest Wildcats to cross Osborn Road to get to the main campus
- the installation of a new, one-of-a-kind, structural shade canopy to provide additional outdoor P.E. space and
- a completely redesigned parking lot at both the front and back of the campus.
Tavan first opened in 1955.
Both projects had to overcome post-COVID supply chain issues, but our teams met every challenge thrown their way. We couldn’t be more proud of the new education environments being delivered to the Pueblo and Tavan communities, thanks to voters’ investment in the future of SUSD nearly seven years ago.
June 2023Posted by SUSD Communications on 6/1/2023