Fulton Public Schools hosted its final community forum for the foreseeable future on Wednesday evening concerning the ongoing facilities planning.
Hollis + Miller architects Justin Durham and Grant Thome provided updates and a space for questions and concerns to a small group of audience members in the Carl E. Lee Gymnasium at Fulton Middle School. After spending the past year working with FPS developing the plan for upcoming April election, the architects' work is essentially done for now.
"From here until the vote, (our remaining work) is almost nothing," Thome said. "We've taken it about as far as we can go up to this point. There might be some opportunities for us to design yard signs and flyers to raise election awareness, but that's basically it."
While FPS does not have to hire Hollis + Miller as its architecture firm if the bond issue passes, Thome said he hopes they will get the job. He said he and Durham have built relationships within the Fulton community over the last year and hope to continue.
Durham described the latest forum as an opportunity to recap the specifics of the various projects at each site throughout the district. Six posters were on display on the gym floor outlining the priorities in each of the district's buildings. There is an emphasis to improve security at each of the buildings.
The district currently plans on building a brand-new 12 classroom kindergarten center on the property of the Fulton Early Childhood Center as well as increasing parking on the property by 300 spaces. There are also plans to conduct roofing repairs, parking lot revisions and increasing lighting control throughout the ECE.
At Fulton High School, some of the priorities include resurfacing the parking lot and adding 150 parking spots, upgrading the sidewalks and curbs, and upgrading plumbing. Additionally, a new competition gym will be constructed; upgrades will be made to theater lighting, sound and seating; and additional nurses will be hired.
At Fulton Middle School, there will be renovations to the building's pole barn, a new reconfigured parking lot and new sidewalks to improve drainage. Improvements will be made to classroom and corridor doors, plumbing will be upgraded, heating and air conditioning will receive upgrades, and the ongoing boiler upgrades will be finished.
At Bartley Elementary, the parking lot will be updated to meet ADA accessibility requirements. Plans also include restroom fixture upgrades and replacements to plumbing and piping throughout the building.
Bush and McIntire elementary schools will receive revisions to their parking lots to improve delivery and drop-off safety. Additionally, there will be upgrades to intercom systems, sidewalk and curb upgrades, and plumbing replacements.
"The only major change we've made since our last community forum has been the location of the new competition gym at the high school. It was expressed that building the gym behind the building might not be the best choice so we decided that putting the gym at the front of the building will give us an opportunity to modernize the school's appearance and improve the drop-off/pick-up zone," Durham said.
If the bond issue passes in April, Durham estimates construction could begin either next winter or spring of 2021. He believes all of the work throughout the district will take two to three years to complete.
"We want to make sure the addition will not impact the sitting students in the buildings so we're going to try to make sure to appropriately rotate when the work is done and who it will impact," Durham said.