EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

October 14, 2013

New high school auditorium delayed


Work was finished in time for the start of school.

Last spring, water entered the auditorium space during heavy rains, leading to the removal of the bottom two feet of drywall as a precaution against mold. An industrial hygienist was on hand for the work. That job will not be charged to the city, Baroni has said.

School and city officials overseeing the $98 million renovation and expansion of Methuen high school have prioritized keeping the project both on schedule and on budget throughout.

The first contractor, Dimeo Construction, was fired at the end of 2011 after its estimates for the project jumped by $6 million. Consigli Construction was hired in May 2012 and immediately dove into the work. Despite the delay, officials say the project is on schedule and forecast to come in at the original $98 million price tag.

Renovation of the south wing and the construction of an addition that included the auditorium, fine arts classrooms and a cafeteria went nearly according to schedule, with the classroom space and the cafeteria opening for school last month.

Crews currently are gutting and renovating the north wing, which is to be finished next summer for the start of school in September 2014.

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