By Travis Smola
Schoolcraft Community Schools recently teamed with Tremco, Inc., to do thermal surveys of the district’s roofs. The results were concerning.
The school board was shown results of the survey at its May meeting. They showed stress fractures and seams in every roof in the district. Another big concern is areas of wet insulation in the high school gym and athletic hall. Some problems were known to the district, but the survey revealed new problem areas. The recommendation is to replace the roof.
At the elementary building, the recommendation by Tremco was to maintain and restore the gymnasium roof , nearly 30 years old, to try to get five more years out of it. The middle school roof is the worst of the bunch. The drains are insufficiently small and Superintendent Rusty Stitt said there were four inches of standing water on it at the time of the survey. A worst-case scenario would be huge areas of saturated insulation.
The estimated costs for repairing or replacing the entire middle school roof in that scenario would be around $700,000.
Another $600,000 is estimated for maintaining or replacing the high school roof.
Stitt said under the current language of the proposed bond issue, approved at the same meeting by the board, there is no money for a roofing project. “I think you’ll find that’s a concern, that’s a red flag for us,” Stitt said.
Stitt noted that the numbers by Tremco were not a bid. The company doesn’t do that kind of work. It is only an assessment. Board Vice President Jason Walther wondered why these issues weren’t caught by the facilities study done by C2AE and Christman Construction.
Bob McGraw of C2AE told the board that some of the issues were known. The ideal scenario would be for the district to pass the bond so the elementary and middle school roofs would become a non-factor other than maintenance to keep them going until the new facilities are built.
McGraw said this new extent of some of the damage at the high school wasn’t immediately recognized mainly because some roof repairs done via an insurance claim masked some of the damage.
The board took no action on the issue. Stitt and the board agreed more assessments to look at the issue more closely are needed before any decisions are made.