Crews work to nail LAHS completion date

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By Jennifer Garcia

Summer break is right around the corner and students at Los Alamos High School not only get a respite from their classes, but also the construction they have dealt with all year.


While the students will get some time off, the construction workers will not. Construction work will continue at the school through the summer months in an effort to nail the completion date in October. Final move-in will be accomplished after checklist items are completed and staff, along with students should be moved in by January 2012.

Although the project was at one point behind schedule by a week, it’s back on track and continues to stay on schedule.

At Tuesday night’s school board meeting, David Warrham of Gerald Martin Construction Management gave a brief presentation to school board members and explained the progress that is being made on the high school.

He pointed out what most people passing by the school have probably already noticed: the walls are yellow.

“I thought we were just being ’Toppers,” School Board President Melanie McKinley joked.

“The walls are going in place, but that’s not the final color,” Warrham said. “The main sheeting is in place on 95 percent of the roof. Waterproofing needs to be done, it’s 15 percent complete. Framing for the walls is in place. Production of the school building is going extremely well.”

According to an update by Gerald Martin, the main building structure is virtually complete and the installation of the roof has begun. The Public School Facilities Authority’s roofing inspector is closely inspecting the roof to ensure quality materials and installation.

Crews are working on the following:
• The lower-level rough-ins are nearly complete, with only the theater installation to go;
• Main-level rough-ins continue for all electrical and plumbing works together with the ductwork;
• Framing of the rooms on the main level continues, with the framing on the upper-level progressing;
• The concrete floor is complete;
• The main-level fire suppression pipe work continues;
• The metal stairs have been installed;
• Demolition of A Wing has been completed;
• The yellow exterior Densglass sheathing continues to progress along the north wall with the structural framing continuing on the south side of the building
During the summer, extensive work will be done on campus, to include new roofs for the other buildings.
School Board Member Judith Bjarke-McKenzie asked if the recent high winds have been a factor in the construction process.

“It stopped the cranes for one day,” Warrham said, “but it basically hasn’t been an issue.”

Because of the construction activity on campus scheduled for the summer months, and the amount of traffic expected to be on campus, Warrham said that he has been in meetings, trying to coordinate work times with the LAPS facilities department. In addition to the roofs being worked on and the regular construction activity, crews are also planning on landscaping the areas around the completed buildings.

“Why are we doing landscaping at the same time?” McKinley asked Warrham.

He said that access roads are needed, along with pathways, and pointed out that the area is already cordoned off.

School Board Vice President Kevin Honnell asked about the likelihood of the project being finished on time.

“It’s a very high percentage,” Warrham said. “We don’t see it as a problem. We don’t foresee any delays. In some places, we’re a little bit ahead.”