Tri-City schools might not be in session, but the sounds of electricians, carpenters and other workers can be heard echoing through their halls.
"It's never a quiet summer," said John Morgan, Pasco assistant superintendent.
District administrators and staff are making use of the summer to conduct needed maintenance in schools while also preparing for the next school year and possible passage of bonds that may go before voters this winter.
Here's a rundown of the projects:
Kennewick School District
-- Sunset View/Cascade elementary school renovations: $9.4 million for Cascade remodel and addition.
The district has renovated a school a year for the past few years, paid for by a $68 million bond approved by voters in 2008. Doug Carl, Kennewick's operations director, said furniture for Sunset View will arrive in late July, in time for the school to reopen this fall. Workers have just started asbestos removal work at Cascade, which must happen before any demolition can take place. Cascade's staff and students will spend the next school year at the Fruitland building at 201 S. Garfield St.
-- Vista Elementary parking lot improvements: $298,805.
The district is installing a new bus loop at the school, and new parking.
-- Re-roofing projects: $709,500.
Amistad and Ridgeview elementary schools, along with the Fruitland school building and the 400 wing of Kennewick High School will get new roofs. Carl said the projects aren't total rebuilds but rather installation of new roof membranes to keep out moisture.
-- Maintenance facility remodel: $285,000.
-- Track resurfacing: $527,000.
The tracks at Kennewick and Kamiakin high schools will get upgraded before students return in the fall, Carl said.
Pasco School District
-- Installation of new portable classrooms: cost figures unavailable.
Contractors will install 12 portable classrooms at various sites throughout the district this summer, Morgan said. They will create 16 elementary school classrooms and eight classrooms at Stevens and McLoughlin middle schools. A multipurpose/cafeteria portable is being installed at Mark Twain Elementary School.
-- Pasco High School roof replacement: cost figures unavailable.
Workers began asbestos removal in late June, and then will proceed to replace the school's old roof. Morgan said there are different layers to the roof throughout the school because of long-term maintenance and additions being done over the years. This work will make it a single layer for the whole building.
"We'll have better drainage," he said.
-- Freezer at McLoughlin: $52,000.
The school continues to grow and will use the new freezer to store food for the school's meal programs.
-- Warehouse freezer expansion and construction of covered storage area at district maintenancebuilding: $315,000.
With enrollment growing throughout the district, Morgan said more space is needed to store the food and other supplies that are distributed to the district's schools.
-- Track improvements at Chiawana High School: cost figures unavailable.
The improvements will resurface portions of the track and add a second long jump lane.
-- Bond preparations.
The Pasco School Board has yet to decide whether to put a$46.6 million bond before voters to pay for new schools and other projects, but Morgan said the district is making preparations to move forward in case it is put on a ballot and approved.
District officials are preparing to apply for special use permits to build two of the three schools called for in the bond and already are putting documents together for a third school project that would follow.
Richland School District
== Gym lighting replacement at Carmichael and Chief Joseph middle schools: $22,000.
Both gyms previously had 350-watt metal halide lighting, which Kevin Knodel, director of facilities and operations for the Richland School District, said were inefficient and took a long time to power up.
District workers will replace those lighting systems with T5 fluorescent lighting that will be connected to motion sensors that will turn the lights off when a room is vacant for 15 minutes.
"Actually, we doubled the light in the gymnasiums," Knodel said.
-- Classroom conversions at Chief Joseph Middle School, River's Edge High School and Tapteal Elementary School: $21,000.
Knodel said workers are converting a regular classroom at the middle school into a computer lab to meet student needs. The job involves removing cabinetry but also installing new power outlets and ensuring there's enough electrical capacity to handle all of the devices.
A room at River's Edge is becoming a dedicated science classroom. District workers finished converting part of the library at Tapteal into a classroom during the school year, which Knodel said was necessary in order to get all the projects done in time.
w Richland High School walkway installation and Hanford High School concrete and asphalt replacement: $70,500.
Private contractors are doing this work for the district, Knodel said. The walkway at Richland High will replace a worn path in the school's courtyard created by students cutting across it.
"They've destroyed the grass," Knodel said.
A portion of the concrete walkway at Hanford High's entrance has deteriorated, something Knodel said was the result of freeze-and-thaw cycles. Crumbling pavement in the school's south parking lot also will be gone after this summer.
-- Ty Beaver: 582-1402; email@example.com