Tentative timeline set to get Franklin School ready for students

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MOLINE, Ill. (KWQC) – The Moline-Coal Valley School District set a timeline for Franklin School construction.

The Moline elementary school caught fire in September. Since then, students have spent their school-year at WIU’s old campus. But the district plans to have students back in their classrooms come the fall.

“A project of this nature might take two years, three years, we're doing it in six and half months,” Moline School's Chief Financial Officer Dave McDermott

Monday, Feb. 12, the board approved design plans for Franklin Elementary. This paves the way for contractors to start the bidding process.

“But we have faith in we have contractors that are very good in the Quad Cities, we have faith in the design process,” he said.

McDermott says there are always concerns for a project of this magnitude and speed.

“We have faith that it will all come together, but then still worried about it because six and a half months kids are gonna want to be in the building,” he said.

But McDermott says it will be done in time for the new school year.

“The school will be ready,” McDermott said.

The reconstruction includes several upgrades.

“Probably the biggest improvement will be new flooring, new paint and all LED lighting,” McDermott said.

Also in the plans are updated security, an ADA cutout at the front of the school and collaborative spaces.

“You’re talking $4-$5 million project after everything's put together,” McDermott said.

$2.5 million dollars will come from the school. The rest will need to be covered by insurance or other avenues.

“We’re at a level where we think we have a plan in place to get the building rebuilt within the limited funds that we allocated,” McDermott said.

And he is hopeful parents, staff and students will be pleased next school year.

“I think everyone will be extremely happy with the end result,” McDermott said.

The school board also approved the sale of general obligation bonds at the same Feb. 12 meeting.

That includes the cost of Franklin's upgrades and upgrades at the high school. Those will be paid with the district's portion of the county's sales tax.

Bids will be opened Feb. 28. The district hopes to begin construction March 12 and have substantial construction completed by June 30.