Batavia board approves first design phase

Christie Boron with CR Architects presents the schematic design of the new elementary school building to board of education members Nov. 18. From left are Mark Ewing, Chris Huser and Boron.

Christie Boron with CR Architects presents the schematic design of the new elementary school building to board of education members Nov. 18. From left are Mark Ewing, Chris Huser and Boron.
By Kristin Rover
Sun staff

Plans are moving along with the new elementary school building project at Batavia Local School District.

Batavia Board of Education Members approved the schematic design of the building during their Nov. 18 board meeting.

Christie Boron with CR Architects, the company designing the building, presented the schematic design and answered questions from board members during the meeting.

“The goal tonight is to get approval of schematic design,” Boron said.

Boron said once schematic design is approved they will move into design development and then into the construction documentation phases.

Boron said only a couple of things changed on the schematic design since she last talked with board members.

Boron said they found out they will not be able to put mechanical equipment on the roof of the building, so they will be planning for that equipment to go in the mechanical room of the building.

She said they are still trying to trim down the square footage in the building to meet the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission requirements.

“The main reason we are over is the corridors,” Boron said.

She said they added extending learning areas to the corridors that teachers could use for break-out learning areas.

Boron said she believes they can trim the excess square footage, about 200 square feet, from the mechanical area during the design development phase or from other areas.

She said 200 square feet is not a lot when taken off some of the large spaces or trimmed down in other areas.

Boron also talked to board members about the budget for the new building.

Boron said the plans so far have the estimated project cost at $22.5 million with $21.2 million co-funded by the OFCC.

She said some of the $1.3 million difference will be reduced as soon as they reduce square footage and make changes in the design development phase.

“I don’t want to approve something budget-wise that is over and have to take it to OFCC,” Michael Enriquez, board member, said.

Boron said they are still under budget when they include alternatives for the building as well as other funds that may be used.

Boron said board members will have the opportunity to reduce nearly $678,000 in alternatives during the design development phase including landscaping, site furnishings, alternative exterior material and more.

She said they may be able to move the playground over from the current elementary school, which would save money.

She said they have also already set aside funds for lime stabilization and other construction, which may not be used.

“My hope is we don’t use it,” Boron said.

Enriquez said they were able to work with the Clermont County Engineer’s Office on some of the road improvements for the new building.

“The good news is we didn’t need to do some of the road work,” Enriquez said.

Boron said she feels comfortable about the budget.

“To me, the good news is we haven’t used LFI (locally funded initiative) and we are still sitting under budget with the alternatives,” Boron said. “Especially considering our budget to start.”

She said board members will also be able to make any necessary budget adjustments in the next couple of phases.

“Schematic design is laying out a floor plan,” Boron said. “We have a general floor plan. Design development is beginning now. We will be in design development from now until April.”

Board members approved the schematic design during the meeting.

For more information about the new building project, visit