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New Rincon Elementary cost: $20.7 million
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        The new Rincon Elementary School will be built at a cost of $20.7 million, after Effingham County Board of Education members agreed to a maximum price at their meeting Wednesday.
Superintendent Randy Shearouse said an advantage of having a construction manager is the project can be value engineered, meaning costs can be pared down if something seems out of line.
        “They can work on that, and work with bidders on reducing their costs,” he said. “We hope to get it down to the $20 million range, which is what we planned on spending.”
        Site work started this summer and the cost of that, about $2 million, is part of the $20.7 million total. Shearouse said Pope Construction, the construction manager for the project, is ready to order rebar.
        “Site work is progressing nicely,” Shearouse said.
        The new Rincon Elementary, to be built along Fort Howard Road, is projected to open August 2018.
        School board members also approved a maximum price for heating, ventilation and air conditioning repairs and modifications at Effingham County High School, setting that at $2.1 million. The school system will pay $633,000 toward the work, and the state is going to spend about $1.4 million.
        The HVAC repairs were of the education-special purpose local option sales tax vote passed by voters.
        The school system budgeted $700,000 from E-SPLOST for Effingham County High School’s HVAC.
        “Those units are 28 years old, and they’re still running,” Shearouse said. “They’ve lasted a long time.”
        Because of the work involved to repair the HVAC system, that work won’t be done while school is in session. The new system is expected to be in by the end of next summer.
        The science, technology, engineering and mathematics addition to the Effingham College and Career Academy is open but won’t be completely finished for a couple of weeks.
        The guaranteed maximum construction price for the STEM addition is $7 million.
        “The STEM addition is in its final stages,” Shearouse said. “I got a text about how nice it is. It is ready to start school.”