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School Construction Has Begun Plus Updates on Butler Field

GreenacresProgressExcavation for the addition at Greenacres Elementary School is underway.School facilities and renovations were top of mind at the first summer meeting of the Board of Education.

Butler Track and Field Update: Athletic Director Ray Pappalardi provided an update on the agreement regarding use of district fields and highlighted a few changes that were made since the last meeting.

The agreement now allows use of the field and the lights for practices until 9 pm rather than 8 pm.

Specifically, here is the draft of the regulation:

Practices on Butler Field using lights may be scheduled in August, September, October, November, March, April, and May. Practices with lights shall be used Monday through Friday only with lights off by 9:00 p.m.

The section on amplified sound now stands on its own and reads as follows:

Amplified Sound
a. Amplified sound will be used only for Scarsdale School events and only for:
i. a thirty (30) minute warm-up period prior to each contest;
ii. pre-event announcements and introductions;
iii. the National Anthem;
iv. event-time announcements.

The agreement specified a phone number and email address for complaints and permits exceptions with the approval of the Superintendent and/or his designee.

The list of Independent Sports Organization permitted to use the lit field was expanded to include Scarsdale Little League.

Pappalardi reported that he had prepared and submitted a packet to the Village for consideration by the Village Planning Board on July 31, 2019.

Following Pappalardi’s presentation, Board members had the opportunity to comment and Ron Schulhof said, “I have concerns with the change to 9 pm. We are in a dense setting. This is a concern. There has been no community meetings about changing the time from 8 pm to 9 pm. I would be uncomfortable to make the change to 9 pm without holding a meeting with all the stakeholders.”

Chris Morin defended the change, saying “We spoke about it at length. We had overwhelming support for 9 pm. The goal is to provide flexibility to the community at times when fields are wet. This would not be burdensome to the community as it would just be 10-15 kids.”

Scott Silberfein added, “The lights would be off by 9 – so practice would be over before then. It would be stopping at 8:45…. We’ll have opportunities for more public comment if the project is going to go forward.”

About the language that requires the Superintendent or his designee to make an exception, Dr. Hagerman said, “All provisions have clauses like these. People have to trust that we’ll use good judgment.” He continued, “We have no interest in being bad neighbors or upsetting people who live around the field.”

Mr. Mattey provided an update on the many construction projects going on in the district.

At Greenacres Elementary School the work has begun and the construction and staging fencing is up. The excavation for the addition on Huntington Avenue is in process. Inside the school, workers have begun demolition and the asbestos removal is largely complete. There will be additional demolition later on. Today, Mattey said, “Everything is on schedule.”

A meeting of the Greenacres Safety Committee was held on July 10 and Mattey said, “There have been no complaints so far, but some emails with suggestions.”

At Heathcote Elementary School the roof is being replaced. Mattey said, “It is a big project.”

At the High School, workers who were digging out the foundation to install new boilers hit some “heavy metals.” Mattey said these metals require testing and abatement. He said, “We were not expecting that. We believe it is left over from decades ago.”

Also planned this summer are the construction of security vestibules at all five elementary school. Mattey reported that the plans for the vestibules at Edgewood and Greenacres have been approved and the district does not expect these to be long projects. However, work at the other schools “will be more involved.”

Mattey anticipates that the asphalt at Butler Field track will be completed by Tuesday, July 16. After a 30 day waiting period, the track coating will be applied, and the work should be done after the first week of fall sports.

FoxMeadowProgressStairway construction is in process at Fox Meadow Elementary School.At Fox Meadow work on the outdoor stairs from the school to the field is in process.

Air conditioning installation in the Heathcote, Fox Meadow and Quaker Ridge Libraries are in process.

At the Middle School new water boilers will be installed in mid-August.
Work on the emergency egress to the band room is ongoing and HVAC for the orchestra room will be installed in late August and early September. However, he reported, the new stage rigging will happen “more towards the winter.”

New elevators will be installed at the middle school and the high school. However, this has not been bid out as yet. Mattey reported that the elevator to the Foreign Language wing of the high school is now out of service. It will take 6-8 months to install a new one. Mattey said the installation will be “large and lengthy” and called it “a bear of a project.”

The Board of Education room at the high school will be redesigned with more functional and stylish mobile furniture that can be easily configured for a wide variety of usage of the room. Dr. Hagerman and Mr. Mattey are in the process of selecting it.

Resident Bob Harrison has spent years advocating for a comfort station – or bathroom – at the Middle School Tennis Courts, and this project now seems to be in process. Mattey reported that he met with representatives from the Village to look at possible locations.

Asked if they had found anything that could hold up the construction at Greenacres, Mattey said, “There was no moisture in any of the walls…… we have time to work around any issues.”

The interior work on the classrooms in the existing school is scheduled for completion by the beginning of the school year to allow the school to be used during the construction of the addition.

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