In 2019, more than 630 children were attending Dominion Middle School, which was built to house 409 students, and the popularity of the high-achieving school suggested a future of rapid growth. At the same time, there was an aging high school in the area that could handle the growth but needed major renovations.
That is when Columbus City Schools (CCS) hired Miles-McClellan as the design/build contractor for the building envelope project of the former North High School. The historically registered building opened its doors in 1924. The design/build team was tasked with making the building safe and dry for students and staff, while preserving the building’s beauty, character and history.
The project replaced the roofing, windows, skylight systems and completed masonry restoration. Each component of this project came with its challenges. The existing windows were installed in plaster containing asbestos that had to be removed, the roofing and masonry work had to be coordinated and, of course, the labor shortage and strict timeline to make sure kids could start school as scheduled in the fall played a role. But this project had the additional challenge of working with the Historical Preservation Committee to ensure all design, materials and construction techniques were approved during the design/pre-construction phase.
One of the historical requirements was to mimic the original historic sightlines of the original windows. After a great deal of preparation work, multiple manufacturer bids and an extensive review of three products to make sure they fit the design and performance specification, the Historical Preservation Committee was pleased, and the approval process went smoothly.
With a highly scrutinized budget by nature of working with a public school system, Miles-McClellan delivered a dry, safer school $19,637 under budget. In a 2020 interview with The Columbus Dispatch, Dominion Middle School Principal Dorothy Flanagan said, “We couldn’t have asked for a smoother process from district leadership and our design and construction team.”
Overall, Miles-McClellan has managed 11 projects to improve the safety and learning environment for CCS, including one current project to replace the HVAC systems in Valleyview Elementary, Westgate Elementary and West Broad Elementary schools.
Other HVAC upgrades, electrical upgrades and facilities renovations include Brookhaven High School, which now houses the Columbus North International High School, and the former Dominion Middle School, which is now the New World Language Middle School.
Safer schools are a priority for Columbus City Schools and Miles-McClellan. We are proud to have helped CCS provide more secure entrances to 10 district school buildings — adding new security checkpoints in five schools and upgrading security vestibules at another five schools. The work included demolition, casework, aluminum storefronts, wood doors, hollow metal frames, door hardware, drywall, painting, HVAC and electrical.
“The team at Miles-McClellan not only produce good work, they are very personable, responsive and organized. They have a great system in place to manage projects and they have helped Columbus City Schools make our schools better and safer for our students.”
-Columbus City Schools Facilities Rep