Originally Published: July 23, 2009 10 p.m.
Humboldt School District Governing Board President Howard Moody, HUSD Superintendent Dr. Henry Schmitt and Prescott Valley Mayor Harvey Skoog on Tuesday cut the ribbon dedicating the school district's new Maintenance and Transportation facility at the Bradshaw Mountain High School East Campus on Robert Road.
Moody said the construction of the new transportation center has "improved the appearance of the (Prescott Valley) town center with the removal of the previous bus barn" adjacent to Liberty Traditional School on Lake Valley Road.
Skoog said the new building is a "nice addition to the town. The entire campus (BMHS East) is first-class. I think there will be a trend toward using this entire campus."
The new 17,000-square-foot transportation/maintenance facility includes five bus bays, offices, training rooms, storage and employee locker rooms.
Schmitt said the new $4.5 million building is part of the $41 million capital B Bond district voters approved in November 2006.
School and construction officials originally estimated the cost of the building at $6.5 million.
The savings allowed district officials to upgrade the bus pad from asphalt to concrete. The bus pad has spaces for 100 buses, and includes engine block heaters for the diesel buses.
During a tour of the building, NL Booth job site supervisor Charlie Haggen said four buses could connect to a central heating station.
Schmitt said the heating stations are "a fuel-saving item as the buses just need to be plugged in overnight to heat the engines rather than start them and letting them run until the engines are warmed up."
The building has a large 200-person capacity conference room with a retractable wall to divide it into two smaller rooms.
In addition to the transportation and maintenance departments, the building will be the new home for the HUSD grounds maintenance crews.
Haggen said the bus bays include four for large-capacity buses and one small service bay for trucks, vans and small buses.
The service bays include a 25,000-pound and a 40,000-pound lift.
One of the major things that makes the service bays so efficient is the overhead air hose and the overhead fluids hose, Haggen said.
Moody said the district received "excellent pricing and was able to upgrade and get many state-of-the-art items. We can do anything here that needs to be done to our buses, up to and including engine or transmission replacement. We have a highly qualified and trained staff," the board president said.
The district eliminated underground fuel storage tanks.
During its July14 meeting, the governing board members approve a Card Lock fueling system. Bus drivers will fill their tanks at one of six gas stations participating in the Card Lock system.
Schmitt said the elimination of underground storage tanks would lower district insurance premiums. The new system, he said, would provide valuable fuel tracking/analysis for each route and bus assignment.
The new building, bus pad and parking lot has an indoor and outdoor security system similar to the one used at Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix.
"The end game," Schmitt said, "is that the district saved approximately $1.5 million on the project and construction was completed on schedule."