Construction is continuing for Alvarado ISD’s new intermediate school, and so far the building is on track to open in December as planned, an administrator said Friday.

“Everything’s going real well,” said Assistant Superintendent Mark Ratcliff. “We are making pretty good progress on the building.”

Architect Alan Roberts visited the site in late February and wrote a report to the district on his observations.

The erection of the steel beams and framework at the site overall is about 80 percent complete, Roberts said in his report. The steel work is continuing in the core area of the building and in each of the school’s three wings — F, G and H.

“The structure is about 60 percent up in wing F and about 80 to 90 percent up in wing G,” Roberts said. “In wing H ... work was almost complete on the installation of the structure to support the exterior sunshade devices. About 90 percent of the columns and beams are up in the central core area.

“Work was also being done in preparation for pouring the floor slab in the library and administration areas.”

The floor slab was scheduled to already have been installed, but the work was delayed because of inclement weather, he said.

Other work at the site is going well, Roberts said.

“Floor drains and plumbing were in place, and steel appeared to be correctly spaced and tied,” he said. “Work appeared to be going smoothly with no apparent problems.”

Rains have caused some delays, but not many, Ratcliff said.

“It hurt us early on more than it is now because we were doing all the concrete work, and you can’t really do that kind of work in the rain,” he said.

The rain halts work during the initial downpour and up to a few days after because workers have to wait for the site to dry before continuing dirt or concrete work, Ratcliff said.

But rain wasn’t the reason the district decided in January to push the school’s opening from August to December, said Superintendent Dr. Chester Juroska.

“Most of the delay happened because of the peer review of the architectural and engineering plans,” he said. The district had a third party check the construction plans for the school, but the process took longer than expected, forcing back the completion date.

But Juroska said he’s pleased with what he’s seen at the site now that work is progressing.

“It’s on our revised schedule and doing well,” he said.

The new intermediate school is part of a $25.5 million bond package passed in November 2006.

The district plans to house grades four through six at the new school, with a planned enrollment of 990 students.

The facility includes a 350 student capacity cafeteria, science labs, computer labs, a gym and additional classrooms for speech, ESL, bilingual and life skills studies.

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