The Governing Board of the Benicia Unified School District will listen to a status update on Benicia High School’s new stadium at Thursday’s meeting.
The stadium is one of the largest projects to be financed through Measure S, an initiative approved by Benicia voters in 2014 to provide $49.6 million in bond funding to be spent on facilities at district schools.
The renovated athletic facility will still be used primarily for football and soccer as well as track and field, pole vaulting and discus throwing. It will also retain the existing scoreboard, but it will have a new 8-lane all-weather track, upgraded lighting, bleachers that would fit up to 3,300 people and a redesigned entryway.
The project is awaiting approval from the Division of State Architecture. If approved, construction will begin when summer break starts in June and is projected to be completed in October.
Bond Director Roxanne Egan will give a presentation on where the status of the project lies at this point in time. According to a report by Egan, the district is still looking for contractors.
“The district’s standard practice when constructing school buildings is to use the traditional low bid process which allows any licensed contractor to bid on the work,” she wrote. “However, there are other legal methods of construction delivery that sometimes are a better fit.”
Egan cited a “lease leaseback” method, which authorizes a district to lease a school site to a contractor for a nominal amount. After the contractor builds the project, it leases it back to the district for 40 years, at which point ownership returns to the district. This process is done without competitive bidding.
“The stadium project involves multiple complex construction challenges which must be completed on a tight schedule,” Egan wrote. “The lease leaseback method will allow the district to select from a list of preferred contractors who have previously performed similar stadium projects for public school districts.”
Egan also noted that staff is working with legal counsel to make sure all construction documents meet legal requirements.
In other business, the board will consider the criteria for determining the order of seniority for employees who have the same date when they began working in the district. Chief Business Official Tim Rahill will also be reviewing the 2015/16 Second Interim Financial Report.
The board will meet at 7 p.m., Thursday, in the Benicia Unified School District Board Room at the district building on 350 East K Street. There will be an earlier closed session at 6 p.m.