The Vale School District received sealed bids earlier this week on a project to demolish the old middle school on Holland Street South. (The Enterprise/Joe Siess)

VALE – The Vale School District held a mandatory pre-bid meeting and walkthrough for contractors interested in bidding on the demolition project for the former Vale Middle School building, on Tuesday, Jan. 28. 

Any contractors interested in submitting a bid were required to attend the meeting in order to be eligible for the project. 

“We were very pleased with the turnout at the meeting,” Alisha McBride, Vale School District superintendent said. 

Around 18 contractors, some local, and some from Idaho and Washington, came to the meeting. 

“The next step is that the district will be receiving sealed bids for contractors,” McBride said. They were due on Tuesday, Feb. 4.

Once the bids are in, the district will then present a contract to the Vale School School Board on Wednesday, Feb. 12. 

“The hope is that the work will be completed by May,” McBride said. “We aren’t just going to leave a hole in the ground.” 

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McBride explained the project includes demolishing the shuttered middle school, installing a sprinkler system, and seeding grass. 

The district has some options for the project depending on the available budget. 

Bidders were asked to submit prices for fencing the parameter of the area to make the new recreation space safe for students and families, McBride said. 

Currently, only two-thirds of the area, which is surrounded by streets on all four sides, is fenced. 

Some other alternates, McBride said, are adding a basketball court, add lighting around the basketball court, and also adding lighting along the perimeter on the east and west sides of the site. 

“When the building is removed it will be a pretty dark space and a lot of students use the sidewalks to go to and from school,” McBride said. 

“Adding some perimeter lighting will make sure it is a well-lit place for students.” 

The district may opt to swap grass seed for sod, McBride said. 

McBride added the district is going to save two pallets worth of bricks from the demolition to be sold to the community as a keepsake of the building. 

The former Vale Middle School building has been around since the 1930s, and served as the high school, the courthouse, and then the middle school. 

“So, it truly has served many purposes in our community and there are a lot of people who have connections to the building,” McBride said.

News tip? Contact reporter Joe Siess: [email protected] or 541-473-3377.

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