Tuesday, June 12, 2012

By Hiring Detroit Residents and Businesses to Work on the $500.5 Million Capital Improvement Program, Detroit Public Schools Maximized Local Participation

Detroit Public Schools Emergency Manager Roy S. Roberts confirmed the Bond Construction Program has exceeded average regional participation goals by hiring more Detroit businesses and Detroit residents to work skilled trades and non-trade jobs for the third consecutive and final year of the $500.5 million Capital Improvement Program that is building new and upgrading DPS facilities as well as demolishing closed and unsafe structures.

More than 60% of all subcontracts were awarded to Detroit-headquartered businesses and more than 50% of all worker hours were performed by Detroit residents, a mark that well exceeds the regional average goal of 25% to 45%.

Over the course of the three-year Bond Construction Program, 62% of all subcontracts were awarded to Detroit-headquartered companies. Detroit-headquartered White Construction and their joint venture partner, Turner Construction, have achieved the highest Detroit subcontractor inclusion at 89%. Their workforce is building the new $28.1 million Munger PreK to 8 School which will open for school this fall. Clark's / Demaria, who completed a $3.8 million renovation at Beckham Academy, and Tooles / Clark, who is building a new $46.3 million East English Village Preparatory Academy on the former Finney High School campus, followed close behind with an 83% inclusion rate.

Detroit resident architects, engineers, project managers, and other non-trade workers have performed over 58% of the total non-trade hours in the Bond Construction Program. The new Mackenzie PreK to 8 School being built by the MIG/Auch design-build team awarded 76% of non-trade hours to Detroit residents. The Munger PreK to 8 School design-build team of White / Turner hired 69% of its non-trade workforce from Detroit, followed closely by Colasanti / DCI and the 68% non-trade worker inclusion they achieved at Western International High School.

"When taxpayers entrusted DPS with their support by overwhelmingly passing a bond issue for school construction, the district in turn made a commitment to not only build state of the art learning facilities but also to employ Detroiters while doing it," Roberts said. "I made sure that my administration kept those promises, and I'm proud to say we beat average participation goals for our region by employing more Detroit workers and businesses, making this bond issue a success not only for our students but for our local economy and the city of Detroit."

At the onset of the Bond Construction Program in 2010, the Greater Detroit Building Trades Council and the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters entered into a Project Labor Agreement with DPS that was structured to maximize opportunities for Detroit residents. The PLA set an aggressive 65% participation goal that helped drive participation levels to far exceed the 25% to 45% historical regional averages.

The unions have been active partners in the recruitment and engagement of Detroit residents throughout the Bond Construction Program. A Labor & Management Cooperation Committee was established to further maximize participation among Detroiters. Members of this committee included representatives of the unions, DPS, the Walbridge Joint Venture, and a contractor representative.

Detroit residents performed 51% of all skilled trade hours in the Bond Construction Program, a mark that well exceeds the regional average goal of 25% to 45%. With aggressive goals, Detroit resident electricians, masons, carpenters, and other skilled trade workers have performed 67% of the total trade hours by the Tooles / Clark design-build team at East English Village Preparatory Academy. Four more projects at Bunche Elementary Middle School, Mackenzie PreK to 8 School, Northwestern High School, and the demolition of old Cass Tech have achieved Detroit resident trade worker inclusion rates over 60%.

The Bond Construction Program has also employed 209 DPS students as part of the successful Summer Student Worker Program, which will continue this summer.

The DPS Capital Improvement Program is in the third and final year of construction and improvement projects. The program includes:

-brand new construction for seven schools
-a new high-tech DPS Police Headquarters & Command Center
-renovations at nine schools
-four large additions including the multipurpose Harambee Center at Marcus Garvey -Academy, an athletic complex at Western International High School, and new gymnasiums at Bethune-Fitzgerald Academy and Bunche Elementary Middle School
-demolition of nine schools including Earhart, Chadsey, Munger, Gompers, Mumford, Finney, Robeson, Martin Luther King Jr. Senior High School, and the former Cass Tech
-mechanical upgrades and stabilization projects at 36 schools
-district-wide security improvements at up to 123 schools.
-Four new schools totaling $150 million will open this fall that will provide some 4,500 students with brand new learning environments replacing older facilities.

Two new high schools currently under construction include the bond program's largest project, a new $50.34 million, 239,000-square-foot Mumford High School and the new $46.3 million East English Village Preparatory Academy that is being built on the former Finney High School site. Two new elementary/middle schools, Mackenzie PreK to 8 School and Munger PreK to 8 School, are nearly complete in Southwest Detroit. The four new facilities will have brand new classrooms and teaching stations to accommodate 4,500 students. Highlights of the schools include new gymnasiums, media centers, community clinics, and swimming pools and new artificial turf stadiums at the high schools.

Combined the 2011 openings of the new DPS Police Headquarters & Command Center and 11 more new and renovated schools totaling more than $200 million, more than 11,500 students currently attend class in greatly improved or new facilities.

September 2011 marked the largest grand opening of facilities in the three-year, $500.5 million Bond Construction Program with the completion of nine new and renovated schools open to 8,000 students. Martin Luther King Jr. Senior High School , Samuel Gompers Elementary Middle School and Amelia Earhart Elementary Middle School are brand new facilities built from the ground up in just over one year. Extensive renovations were done at Marcus Garvey Academy , Beckham Academy, Bunche Elementary Middle School, Denby High School , Henry Ford High School and Western International High School .

Program manager for the Bond Construction Program is Walbridge Joint Venture, which includes Brailsford & Dunlavey, Walbridge, and Fanning Howey.

Detroit voters approved Proposal S in November 2009 which enabled the district to access $500.5 million for school capital improvement projects. DPS received the sixth largest allocation in the nation.

The improvement program also includes technology upgrades and security initiatives being funded with Proposal S dollars. To comply with federal guidelines, all bond dollars must be spent within three years and all projects must be completed by September 2012.


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