Top Bar


Off-Canvas

Long Range Facilities Plan

Strategic planning is a hallmark of the district's approach to effective governance, responsible stewardship and excellence in education. The district develops long range strategic plans in many areas including curriculum, technology, facilities / grounds, and our comprehensive plan. Long range planning allows the district to focus on the highest priorities in order to best meet the safety and instructional needs of students. Planning supports continually looking at current and future needs - adapting to change and adopting best practices.

Read more about district-wide planning here.
 

Why Do We Have a Long Range Facilities Plan?

  • While the district has always supported planning for capital projects, we have been formally planning and strategically providing funding for facilities and grounds maintenance since the 2012-13 school year.
  • We believe that districts that have consistent capital investment funding are more able to provide healthy, safe, sustainable, and educationally appropriate school facilities.
  • Planning for the future provides the Board with the best opportunity to understand funding requirements by year and to develop stable, sustainable and fiscally responsible budgets and borrowing plans in order to offer reasonable and predictable tax schedules to our taxpayers.
  • A long range plan offers transparency and community engagement considering needs of all stakeholders and adopting balanced solutions.
     

Click to view our UCF Success for All: Stewardship Video

Stewardship - “the careful and responsible management of something entrusted to one's care”

 


 

Long Range Facilities Plan Resources

Buildings and Grounds Planning Principles

  • We follow state and district standards for building and field use.
  • We need to consider facilities when approving the addition of new programs.
  • We follow all bid approval procedures as required by state law and our own board policy in order to do detail design work and discuss projects publicly in board meetings.
  • Develop plans that span 10-15 years but only fund the plans 3 to 4 years at a time. This complies with the PA Department of Education guidelines, and insures that the District is not over-borrowing for projects
  • Our internal maintenance staff have a wide range of skills and are committed to excellent work. As a result, we can keep subcontractor use to a minimum, saving the district money. Careful maintenance allows us to routinely exceed normal industry standards for life expectancy of equipment and facilities.

Long Range Facilities Plan

History of Long Range Facilities Planning

  • 2012-13 - The Board approves a Board goal tasking UCF administration to "Complete Long Range Plan"
  • July 2013 - proposal from M&M Architects for facilities study at Hillendale and Patton to identify and prioritize renovation needs. M&M used Gipe Associates, Inc. as sub-consultants for HVAC, Electrical and Mechanical recommendations.
  • November 2013 - Administration presents long range plan to the Board (see attached). This becomes the guiding document for facilities work.
  • October 2015 - Long Range Plan is updated (see attached)
  • May 2017 - Long Range Plan is updated (see attached)
  • March 27, 2017 - Facilities Committee Meeting to discuss updating our Long Range Plan out to 2026

    Documents supporting the meeting
    Link to video of meeting
  • May 8, 2017 - The Board discussed the long range plan at the Work Session and asked Administration to find a third party vendor to do a campus plan. All board members gave a "head nod" to move forward in that direction.

    Link to video of meeting (See minutes 10:00 to 35:15)
  • October 9, 2017 - The Board discusses at the Work Session a request for proposal (RFP) for site study to include overall footprint and athletic facilities. RFP is attached.
    Administration reviewed proposals from K&W and ELA. K&W’s proposal outlined a more thorough approach at a lower cost.
  • November 20, 2017 - The Board approved (9-0) for K&W Engineers to prepare an Outdoor Facilities Master Plan.
  • June 11, 2018 - The Board receives a presentation by K&W at the Work Session on the current status of site study and proposed plan.

History of Improvements Supported by the Plan

  • During the spring of 2014 - the Board approved 1.3 million dollars in facilities work district-wide - including $611,000 for a new roof at HES. This was year one of the Long Range Plan
  • During 14-15 school year the Board approved nearly 3.2 million dollars in facilities work district-wide - including 2.7 million to renovate the PMS main office. This was year two of the Long Range Plan.
  • During the 15-16 school year the Board approved 2.8 million dollars in facilities work district-wide - including 1.7 million to renovate the PMS auditorium. This was year three of the Long Range Plan.
  • During the 16-17 school year the Board approves 3.7 million dollars in facilities work district-wide - including 2.3 million to replace the PMS HVAC units.

Next Steps

  • Continued communication with community
  • September K&W Presentation - K&W presented recommendations on how to use grounds and a process for prioritizing upgrades based on safety and cost. View the K&W Outdoor Facility Study - Strategy Starts Here
  • October - Board will discuss the Long Range Plan, raising questions for administration to consider.
  • November - review a draft of the Long Range Plan with the Board
    • This plan should include existing Long Range Plan components (largely indoor) and some components of the outdoor plan
    • Items from the K&W report that the UCFSD elects to not include in the Long Range Plan will be added to the last plan section “Potential Considerations for the Future”
  • Dec 10th - Administration will facilitate a Community Conversation.
    6:30-8:30pm in the UHS cafeteria.
     
  • Jan - Board consent of the Long Range Plan.
  • Spring 2019, determine funding for the next 3 years of the Long Range Plan.
    • Even if we add no new projects based on K&W's outdoor planning recommendations, it is time to issue new bonds to support the existing Long Range Plan.
    • We have postponed the need to borrow for 4 years by refinancing debt and by re-investing surpluses from lower than expected healthcare costs.
    • We have not needed to incur new debt until now because we have planned so well.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Why have we heard that the plan is costing $10 million dollars?
Currently there is no plan to spend $10 million dollars on our outdoor facilities. That number was thrown out as a “ball park” number of what everything in the draft plan might cost if fully built out. The final plan, was presented in September, and featured conceptual level estimate ranges for each element of the plan. This allows the plan to cost whatever the Board, community, and administration believe is the right amount to spend in order to support our programs, and maintain our facilities in a safe and fiscally responsible manner.

Consultant self-serving in recommending this work in order to get follow up business.
The District follows state bidding requirements in awarding design and construction work. It’s possible that K&W could be awarded work in the future but it would be done through a competitive RFP process that would provide the most value to the District.

Facilities are fine and require no upgrades - majority of those surveyed think things are fine.
Survey was one piece of this. There is other data supporting this... The life expectancy of current facility materials and Tennis courts are over 25 years old and need to be replaced anyway - this is a good opportunity to do that.

Facilities are fine for school use and upgrades are being done only for outside organizations.
Most of the upgrades being proposed are prioritized based on improving the overall safety of the campus. The other elements are being proposed either as a result of the safety upgrades (relocation of tennis courts), or to improve current site deficiencies (parking, sloped fields, etc.). There is no additional space being built for outside organizations to use.
 

Unionville Elementary School

Can the parking lots be restriped by UCFSD maintenance? (Element 1A)
We have performed numerous re-striping and painting over the years with in-house staff. At this point the projected scope of work requires a mill and overlay of the paving as the years of seal coating and covering continue to wear through due to plowing and salting operations. These details require a significant amount of time and specific equipment beyond our maintenance departments capabilities.
 
The ballfield is not necessary since there are no elementary baseball teams. The backstop and fencing are in very good condition with only some surface rust. (Element 1B)
While there are no elementary baseball teams, the field is used regularly for physical education classes and during recess. Our maintenance staffs’ current duties maintaining our primary athletic fields does not leave us the opportunity to properly address this field. The field would need additional maintenance such as re-edging, re-grading, adding infield mix, top-dressing, and overseeding. Additionally, issues with the backstop and fence are more extensive than just surface rust.
 
How will the outdoor classroom, nature trail and nature play area be addressed? (Elements 2 - 4)
Use for these elements has not been defined; however, there is an opportunity to explore the potential to utilize these areas in support of curriculum initiatives. Further discussion is needed to develop a program that will bring to light the true potential of these elements as resources for our students. Additionally, these elements could be addressed in partnership with various conservancy groups as opposed to a District capital expense.
 
High School/ Middle School
 
The JV and Varsity backstops, field fences and foul poles are in very good condition.  Why wasn't netting installed long ago if the situation is so dangerous? (Element 1A)
The backstops are fine and will stay as they are. The work on these elements is a ball control system to avoid foul balls from entering the track/stadium area and causing injuries. Balls leaving the field occur more often than you would think. In the past, the hazard was regulated by avoiding scheduling overlap; however this is difficult to accommodate especially when you factor in weather delays and rescheduled games.  
 
The softball field fence and backstop are in excellent condition, they were replaced recently. Why wasn't an appropriate backstop, wrap around, installed at that time?  (Element 1D)
The backstop is new and is appropriate. The work here is a ball netting system along 82 to prevent balls from entering the roadway.  
 
Why does varsity softball need a fence and warning track? (Element 3B)
The addition of fence and warning track will bring our softball field on par with others in the league as well as with other fields in our district. They will also assist in ball containment and increase safety.
 
Existing tennis courts are in great shape. Why would we relocate them?
Our tennis courts are over 25 years old and life expectancy on asphalt based courts is 25-30 years. They were just re-coated a year ago due to numerous cracks from the breakdown of the asphalt base. We anticipate conditions to worsen and require a full replacement sooner rather than later. Additionally, relocating the courts would give us the opportunity to address the shortfall of the current layout. JV and Varsity play seven matches per event. Only having six courts delays the start of the JV game, therefore, increasing the length of the overall event.
 
How do we justify the expense of the new turf and tennis facilities?
Practice and game times have been evaluated based on current field availability vs the new quad turf and tennis courts. Analyzing a 30 day period of athletic events the data showed that teams would finish earlier than they do now getting student athletes home sooner and allowing Athletics to ultimately hold more events.
 
Are we exploring alternatives to the tennis expansion and relocation?
Alternative options can and probably should be explored, however, we need to have the conversations that justify and support that direction.
 
Is there a potential benefit of ending athletic activities much earlier if we install quad turf fields?
Yes. Data has shown that teams would finish earlier than they do now getting student athletes home sooner and allowing Athletics to ultimately hold more events. (View Athletic study information here)
 
What are the cost comparisons for synthetic versus natural? (Element 3C - Synthetic Quad)
The only fair comparison between costs of natural vs synthetic surfaces is to compare a 15 year life cycle cost and a per event cost over that time frame.  In doing this analysis (link to natural vs synthetic surfaces) on a per event cost the synthetic turf field comes out to be less costly than a grass field. Couple that with the environmental impact of not having to use fertilizer or pesticides on grass fields and it becomes an even more worthwhile expense.
   
What justifies a new parking lot? There are no figures provided for parking. (Element 4A)
According to an analysis of our current parking assessment, we are under the minimum amount of spaces needed for our facilities. (Link to parking data) Although, the need to comply has not been mandated, once work begins on our facilities, zoning ordinances can require the district to address the minimum amount of spaces needed.
 
The middle school fields drain well and sloping is minimal and does not warrant a $250,000 price tag to make them perfectly level. These are middle school athletes, not professionals.  (Element 6A)
These fields are actually our slowest draining fields and are closed more frequently than open when we experience unfavorable weather. Although not identified as a high priority item, middle school athletes should have a moderately level field to ensure optimal practice and play.
 
What will happen with the Barn? Will it be demolished?
Currently, there are no plans to demo the barn. We will review options for the barn if any of the outdoor study elements in this area warrant modifications.
 
How does this plan address field use by outside groups, will they be responsible for maintenance costs and how will the district charge these groups moving forward?
The district currently has a Facility Use Policy that identifies how outside groups will be charged for use of our facilities. The district may revisit this policy based on the increase of use due to the improvements made as part of this plan. Ideally a facility use committee may be created to identify any proposed changes based on actual costs that the District experiences to make sure future charges are appropriate.  
 
Our current traffic flow seems smooth and efficient. Is there really a need for a new central spine drive line and are there any alternative options?
Alternative options can and probably should be explored, however, we need to have the conversations that justify and support that direction.

 

Submit Feedback

We welcome and appreciate feedback from our Community. Please share your thoughts and ideas with us by filling out the form below.

Long Range Facilities Plan feedback Form

Questions? Please contact us at ucfsdcommunications@ucfsd.net

Community Conversation

Join us December 10th, 2018
6:30-8:30pm
UHS Cafeteria

Administration will facilitate a Community Conversation. 
Details will be posted in the upcoming weeks.

Online Discussions

Check back for more information about our online Pnyka discussions.  

Discussion dates and times COMING SOON....

Click here to learn more about Pnyka.