Southwestern Community College Board of Directors approved an instructional center improvement project at a public hearing Friday in the SWCC president's office. The board also accepted a bid from Proctor Mechanical of West Des Moines.
The project will be done in two phases. The bid from Proctor Mechanical was $388,300 for phase one.
"They will start as soon as possible," said Tom Lesan, vice president of economic development at SWCC. "They have to bore under the courtyard from the existing boiler room, and they want to do that before the frost hits."
Phase one of the project includes replacing the existing boiler-plant equipment, and tying in a new sprinkler main, adding all necessary valves and controls. The main will be extended across the lobby and into the mezzanine area in the instructional center for future distribution in phase two.
At the regular SWCC board of directors meeting Oct. 9, Dr. Barb Crittenden, president of SWCC, said this project ties into the college's ACE (accelerated career education) projects.
"Our ACE projects have been set aside for the last couple of years because we were waiting until we had enough funds to do this work in the instructional center," she said.
Lesan said until the college goes out for bids, they won't know what the exact cost will be, but the guesses from the mechanical engineer and architect are it won't be more than $1.4 million for both phases.
"We can do the $1.4 million with ACE money," said Lesan.
Phase two is expected to be bid in January if the board approves it.
"That is when the classrooms will get remodeled," he said. "That will start around March 15 if the board approves that. We will be down probably four and a-half months in the 100 bay hallway for phase two."
The 100 bay hallway is the main hallway in the instructional center that has all classrooms numbered in the 100s. If everything goes as planned, most of the work on phase two will be completed before classes start in August 2013.
Some of the things planned for phase two include installation of new:
• sprinkler distribution system
• windows in exterior classrooms
• light fixtures in classrooms and the hallway
• interior finishes like paint and carpet.
Lesan said the project should help with heating and air conditioning problems being experienced in the instructional center.