A Pennsylvania school district will have to pay nearly $1 million to re-mediate mold at a high school building, according to testimony offered at a school board meeting last week.
Robert Nesbit of the architectural firm Crabtree Rohrbaugh Associates told the Hazleton Area School Board that every brick in the building and a 24-inch swath around the roof had to be replaced after mold was found. The bill came to $997,855.
Workers noticed the mold in April while replacing windows at the Hazleton Area Academy of Sciences.
The school is intended to be a magnet school for students that are gifted in math and science. The building had been constructed to be a corporate center, but was empty for years until being purchased for use as a school.
An earlier report to the school board found that replacing the brick walls would cost $739,000, and the roof repairs would cost $94,000. Nesbit said all the window frames and glass also had to be replaced.
The workers couldn’t work on the interior until the exterior brickwork was finished and the plastic partitions were removed. This put them behind schedule, so they had to work overtime to finish the interior renovations in time. The school opened on schedule on September 5.
A vice president from the company that built the building, Quandel Construction, said he believed that insurance would cover the expense.
The school district has hired an industrial hygienist to determine what caused the mold to grow.