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Posted on Tue. Mar. 25, 2014 - 12:01 am EDT

FWCS hit with hefty storm bill

$39,000 invoice includes frozen pipes, heater parts

Subzero temperatures and heavy snow in early January damaged about two dozen Fort Wayne Community Schools buildings, officials said.

FWCS school board members voted Monday to move money from the district’s emergency fund to cover the $39,920.42 used to make repairs after the Jan. 4 snowstorm.

The storm dumped nearly 10 inches of snow, and temperatures were as low as minus 42 degrees with the wind chill factor, according to the National Weather Service.

Although many buildings required minor repairs, several others sustained thousands of dollars in damage. The frigid weather caused water pipes to burst and broke heating coils in several buildings.

“We had some broken coils and some small cleanup projects. But for some of it, we had to hire some outside contractors,” said Darren Hess, director of facilities.

North Side High School, Shawnee Middle School and the Grile Administrative Center sustained the most damage, with repairs costing from $64 to nearly $6,800, he said.

Two rounds of water removal at North Side High School cost about $5,300, and repairs from water damage cost an additional $4,883.

January’s subzero temperatures also caused several sprinklers to freeze and break, Hess said. The cost for sprinkler repairs was more than $2,100.

A broken waterline at Shawnee cost the district $4,168 to repair, and Grile sustained a large amount of water damage that cost more than $6,700 in repairs, he said.

The repairs were paid for by the Facilities Interior Account within the Capital Projects Fund.

Board buying 2 properties

Also Monday, the board approved the purchase of two properties near Bloomingdale Elementary School.

The district will pay $33,000 for the property at 1211 Marion St. and $38,000 for a second property at 1209 Marion St., officials said.

Both properties are south of the school, at 1300 Orchard St., and are adjacent to the school’s parking lot. Two houses are located on the lots.

The properties will be used as a contractor staging area during coming building projects, Hess said.

After renovation projects are complete, the properties will be used for additional parking.

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