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City error delays Nichols Hills Elementary saferoom gym

OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma City officials have delayed the construction bid for Nichols Hills Elementary’s saferoom gymnasium project because of a clerical error.

One year ago, construction companies lined up at City Hall to bid on the gymnasium project.

However, after the city opened the bids, the school district decided to delay the project so the architect could re-design it as a saferoom gymnasium.

Oklahoma City Public Schools is committed to building safer school buildings, but the district hasn’t built a FEMA-rated saferoom in 10 years.

WATCH: Nichols Hills Elementary gym project is delayed to be re-designed

Architecture firm Hornbeek and Blatt re-designed the project as a saferoom gym.

Parents at Nichols Hills Elementary are frustrated with the project delays, and there have been many.

  • 11 years ago, the school P.T.A. started raising money for a new gym.
  • Seven years ago, the city stepped in with a bond issue to complete the gym.
  • Three years ago, the district started building the gym, then halted the project, so it could be moved to another location on the other side of the property.
  • In July, the city was forced to make another delay because of a clerical error in the bid packet.

“As we were preparing the bid packet, we accidentally selected the affidavit from the city rather than the school district,” said Oklahoma City spokesperson Kristy Yager.

The city now has an electronic bidding process.

The project manager apparently clicked the wrong box while preparing the bid packet.

Yager said the city has taken steps to ensure this kind of mistake does not happen again with the new electronic bid system.

“There’s been one problem after another on this project.” Yager said. “This is going to delay it about two months, but once we get started then I think people will be happy with the project.”

The scope of the project has not changed at all. It will be re-bid next Tuesday, Aug. 12.

The bids will be opened in September and construction is expected to start in October.

The Nichols Hills Elementary gym will be the first saferoom built by Oklahoma City Public Schools since the completion of several “MAPS for Kids” projects in 2004.