Sunday, December 10, 2023

Nationwide Construction Material Shortages Delay YCSD Renovations

Bruton High School Library. Nationwide construction supply shortages have delayed renovations and repairs at York County Schools. (Courtesy of York County School Division)

YORK COUNTY — With the start of the 2021-22 school year just around the corner, York County Schools Division (YCSD) is doing its best to complete renovations and repairs at several schools around the county before the start of the term on Aug. 30.

At the monthly YCSD school board meeting on Aug. 23, Associate Director for Capital Plans Mark Tschirhart presented status reports on a handful of projects including the renovations on the library and School for the Arts at Bruton High School, 185 East Rochambeau Drive, roof repairs at York High School, 9300 George Washington Memorial Highway, and gym renovations at Tabb Middle School, 300 Yorktown Road, and York Middle School, 11201 George Washington Memorial Highway

The county wanted all of the projects to be completed by the time school started, but Tschirhart told the board that nationwide construction material shortages and delays have pushed back completion dates on several of the projects.

According to a survey conducted by the National Association of Homebuilders, more than half of builders are reporting shortages in steel beams, insulation, roofing materials, vinyl siding, and copper wiring.

As a result of the setbacks, projects at Bruton will not be completed until November. So far solar tube lighting has been installed in the library and new HVAC ductwork is in the process of being installed. Currently the county is waiting on ceramic tile and furniture to be delivered.

Another project hit hard by shortages is the roof repair at York High School. They were able to make spot repairs to blisters in the roof and apply a roof coating to some areas. However the county will have to cease operations in the fall, because the coating can not be applied during cold or wet weather. Coating will resume in the spring.  Also, the insulation needed for the project will not be delivered until February 2022.

Tabb and York middle schools renovated their respective gyms over the summer. The two gyms at Tabb and the one at York all received new paint, lighting and finished flooring.  Due to delays, all three gyms will not be considered complete until after the fall semester begins. Tschirhart noted that, thanks to the installation of exhaust fans in the facilities, it will be safe for students to attend school in the buildings.

As for future repairs, Seaford Elementary, 1105 Seaford Rd., is next on the county list. While official dates are still in the air, YCSD hopes to begin building a classroom addition in May 2022. During the summer of 2023, there is slated to be be a renovation of the school’s current building as well as the construction of a bus loop.

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