This is what you get with consultants, visioning and free spending…
The proposed $ 120 Million New George Mason High
- Ready in 4 years
- 1,500 Students
- Certified Silver LEED
This is what you get with good leadership and a reasonable budget …
Huguenot High School, Richmond, VA $ 64 Million
- Completed 2015 1,400 (flex to 1,700) students
- Auditorium for 1,000
- Certified Gold LEED
- TV studio & Media Center
- Dining commons for 500
- Three court gym for 2,500
- New Stadium for 3,500
- Field House
I have the feeling that due to ‘social status’ reasons of keeping up with Arlington County …. the proposed cost of the new GMHS ($120M + cost overruns) is being inflated. Plus, same gang that gave us the 20% cost overrun on Mt. Daniel (plus big delay).
Mark: That is what I heard discussed, I believe, is a 20% overrun on Mt. Daniel. However, what I would really like to see, since we paid for it, is a full accounting of all the expenses that contributed to this reported 20% overrun. I have been doing FOIA requests for the payment applications on the Mt Daniel Grunley contract since 2015 and continue to be amazed at the spending and the lack of oversight on this project from the board level — as far as I can tell. When I am on the board, I will initiate changes in this regard because I believe part of the budget process, for which the board is responsible, is knowing where the money goes and why. It’s called accountability. Dr. Noonan has his work cut out for him and from what I understand he has already initiated changes.
Was the 20% overrun because they had to re-design the school to meet the requirement that it be smaller for the neighborhood or was it because there were delays and other mismanagement?
I keep hearing 20% increases and some others have said we will have the same if we delay the high school building but I think it was not due to just time (a year+ delay) but because of multiple events.
It’s frustrating because no one will admit to the mistakes and tell us how they learned from them.
It’s much cheaper to build in the Richmond area than in Northern Virginia.
I disagree. Hess, who built Huguenot, is based in DC along with all their employees and staff. They have to send them to Richmond which raises their costs. Land is cheaper, correct, but labor is not because they use DC labor.
Let me know if you can substantiate the labor costs but I know when we send people to other cities, it actually costs more because we have to provide housing, per diem and transportation costs.
I agree with Josh. The competition in the DC area provides lower costs. Supply and Demand – economics 101. There are less big construction companies in Richmond and that is why DC firms build there and they can charge more. Hess is from DC – they didn’t use a local Richmond firm because one didn’t exist or was too expensive.
I think there is some truth to what Mark said above.
Some in the FCC establishment can’t stand it if our school costs less than one built in Arlington. They automatically think we have to keep up with our neighbors rather than looking at is a positive in terms of spending less because we can’t afford it and we want to save money for our taxpayers.
As for Mount Daniel, I saw one city official tout Mount Daniel as a terrific accomplishment. What that official should have said (and I would not have said anything given the debacle it was) is okay we are going to get a renovated elementary school but frankly I have to admit mistakes were made and an apology is due not just to taxpayers but to parents and students too. Don’t forgot that on top of considerable money wasted, the school board asked the city council to cough up an additional $1.5 million if my memory is correct to which some said I had to hold my nose when I voted for it.