By Mark Mahoney

Summerland sites tackle summer to-do lists


August 6, 2020

Mark Mahoney

Summer projects • Creighton Plumbing owner Steve Morrill uses a mini excavator to move dirt Monday afternoon, at Summerland Public Schools' Orchard site. The business recently has been working on a sewer line project at the location.

Only one of the three Summerland Public Schools sites has seen much in the way of building repair projects this summer.

The school locations in Clearwater, Ewing and Orchard underwent normal summer cleaning, repair and maintenance, according to Superintendent Dale Martin.

"In addition to that, there have been some building repair projects necessary to get us to the next step," Martin said.

"The Orchard site has a sewer project where a line was getting plugged fairly regularly last year during events and we put it off until this summer," he said.

Creighton Plumbing is scheduled to complete the sewer line project this week, weather permitting.

Martin noted he would not know the total cost of the project until after the work has been finished.

The Orchard school site also has had an HVAC system down for quite a while that Trane, of Omaha, is scheduled to work on in the near future, perhaps even this week.

The HVAC – heating, ventilation and air conditioning – project is expected to cost $16,000 to $17,000.

"Parts and service were delayed for quite some time due to COVID-19," Martin said. "The cost of this will be paid primarily through warranty and insurance coverage."

The 2020-21 academic year for Summerland marks the last time the three school sites will be used as homes for its students' classes.

A new educational facility for students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade is being constructed near the intersection of 513 Avenue and Summerland Road, in rural Antelope County, between Clearwater, Ewing and Orchard.

As far as the future of each community's Summerland school site, the school district is in discussions with Neligh-based Educational Service Unit 8 on the possibility of selling the Clearwater location to the ESU.

"Right now, that appears to be a good option," Martin said.

Summerland's Orchard school site may be purchased for use by several groups in the community.

"This is also still in the discussion stage," Martin said. "To make this option more feasible, the district may tear down the older three-story portion."

The school district's Ewing location does not have any potential interested buyers at this time.

"We do know that the older elementary building has reached the end of its life cycle and very likely will also be torn down," Martin said.


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