Harydpond began an exciting, multi-phase renovation on Lyseth Elementary School last summer. With a highly choreographed work schedule, we continued work through the winter, laying foundations and erecting steel structures for the new gym and library. Despite unexpected challenges, we made great strides over the last year adding overhead beams and pouring the new structural footings. The new administration building we started last summer is almost complete and is expected to be open for staff in mid-August. This structure also serves as an inviting new school entrance for students. With a big skylight and an interesting mix of materials, students will be welcomed back to a big transformation in their school’s appearance.
This new look is one of the exciting features of the Lyseth project. We incorporated four different kinds of brick along with three types of siding panels–Trespa, Tacktl, and Alucobond– to give the school a more modern facade. We are always seeking opportunities to expand our experience and expertise and these were new products for our team to work with. This juxtaposition of old and new materials provides an interesting design element for the school, showcasing Hardypond’s commitment to excellence both in construction and composition.
The other new structures added to Lyseth include the new library and gymnasium. The library, a grand and open new space, is slated to be complete by the end of August. Students will be able to enjoy the new gymnasium later in the fall, which will be a welcome change from having to squeeze gym activities into the cafeteria space. Likewise, the cafeteria has received upgrades as well so it can serve as a dedicated space for student mealtime and after school activities.
Successfully coordinating the logistics of this large project has been integral to the job, especially as it involved working safely around the Lyseth students and teachers while school was in session. When the school year was abruptly cut short in March because of COVID-19, Hardypond needed to provide even greater organizational oversight and put procedures in place to keep the project progressing safely. “Nothing is insurmountable,” says Hardypond President, Deirdre Wadsworth. “We have good people on our team who can make good, quick choices which helped keep everyone safe,” she continues. Hardypond immediately set clear standards for the crews and expected our employees to model proper behavior for the new safety requirements of the work site. Fortunately, Lyseth Elementary School is a big site with a lot of large, open spaces for the crew to work on, so there were opportunities to continue the work safely. Nevertheless, all workers coming onto the site were asked health questions and only people who could demonstrate good health could come to work. While some scheduling issues did arise in order to keep the site safe, Hardypond was also able to be nimble with the extra time and incorporate efficiencies within the job so subcontractors could keep working despite unexpected setbacks.
In addition to the logistics of maintaining a safe site for workers during the pandemic, Hardypond also needed to coordinate a way for Lyseth teachers to come on site and gather materials left behind. While it did present some challenges for the construction schedule, we were committed to working together with the teachers and Lyseth staff so everyone could get what they needed in a safe and timely fashion. This unforeseen situation gave us an opportunity to demonstrate our commitment to communication and excellent project management. As always, when problems arise, Hardypond finds solutions to keep the project moving forward.
Stay tuned this fall for another update!