The Ohio Facilities Construction Commission has hired a consultant, WJE, which has a Cleveland office, to review the construction issues at the Brookfield Local School District building on Bedford Road, create a scope of work to fix the problems, estimate repair costs and formulate a timeline for getting corrective action taken, said Brookfield Supt. Toby Gibson.
The district and OFCC partnered in the construction of the building.
“Their hope is to, by mid-March, have a plan, have a scope of work of what needs to be done,” Gibson told the school board Feb. 12. “That scope of work will be used for the bid process.”
Gibson said April 6 he still had not heard back about the consultant’s review.
WJE is looking at issues such as shifting shale under the middle school that is causing the hall floor to rise and walls to crack; roof buckling; roof and window leaks; and driveway subsidence.
The district and OFCC are splitting the consultant’s cost, and each have money that is left over from the building construction in 2010 and 2011 that could be used for fixing problems.
“At least we’re making some headway,” said board member George Economides.
Two new board members, Jerry Necastro and Sarah Kurpe, who have not dealt with the issue as long as Economides, said they are frustrated by the slow pace of action.
The board heard a presentation by school maintenance personnel outlining the major problems in April 2018, and a year later school officials said Bricker and Eckler LLC, a law firm, had conducted a review of the problems for presentation to OFCC.
The building problems have been cited by some voters as a reason not to approve permanent improvement levies proposed by the school district, even though officials pledged that no levy money would be used to fix the building.
“I think that needs to come to an end, because there’s costs involved that this district doesn’t know how much we’re gonna have to pay to cover the repair,” said board member Jerry Nescastro. “I think that, as a board moving forward, I think that needs to be brought to an end this year.”
Kurpe said the building issues are affecting people’s perceptions of the school.
“I think you’re really hitting home on the point that we have to get this behind us,” she said.
All photos were contributed by Gibson.