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New school offices get OK in Chambersburg

January 14, 1999|By DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - Bids totaling more than $2.7 million for a new administration building were approved Wednesday night by the Chambersburg Area School District Board of Directors.

The bids were about $800,000 more than the district had originally projected for renovating a 38,000-square-foot building on the former J. Schoeneman Co. property across the street from the high school, according to District Business Manager George Fike.

Fike said the district expected the cost of remodeling the former clothing factory would be about $1.9 million, "but in reviewing the bids we found they were in line with what the market is bearing right now."

Since much of the work will be inside, Fike said the project could begin soon. Completion of the work is expected by this fall.

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The Schoeneman property was purchased by the district for about $1 million in 1996, according to Fike. Half of the purchase price was reimbursed by the state, but the conversion of the building is not reimbursable.

In 1997, the district took out a construction loan to cover the cost of remodeling and expanding the Hamilton Heights Elementary School, a district-wide computer project and the administration building, Fike said.

The additional $800,000 will come from the district fund balance, he said, adding there is about $3.7 million in that reserve.

Currently, school district administration offices are spread out in five different locations. Once completed, the office will bring together about 65 employees.

Fike said the Chambersburg Area Wage Tax Office will also share part of the building and will contribute to the cost of the renovation.

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