Jasper County School District Files Lawsuit Concerning School Co - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

Jasper County School District Files Lawsuit Concerning School Construction

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Jasper County School Board Chairperson, Berty Riley says the Jasper County School District has initiated litigation concerning the design and construction of specific elements of the Ridgeland and Hardeeville school sites. 

In her letter, Riley says several sinkholes have formed at both sites.  She says after investigating the cause of the sinkholes, defects in the construction of the underground storm water system have been identified.  These defects not only promote the formation of sinkholes at points above the underground drainage pipes, but also cause the storm water system to do a poor job of storm water drainage away from the buildings, paved areas, and fields. 

The letter adds that in addition, both the Ridgeland and Hardeeville school sites have experienced water intrusion at windows and stairwells where sections of the school buildings connect. The District says the original contractors recently attempted repairs to the areas, but because these areas were designed and constructed with materials different from the precast concrete panel system used for most of the buildings, there exists an increased risk of additional maintenance and repair costs for the District.  

Riley says these issues have not affected the District's classrooms or offices.  The District will continue to monitor and mark off areas affected by the development of sinkholes and make prompt repairs where pedestrian or vehicle traffic may be affected.  Areas of the buildings that have experienced water intrusion have been freshly patched, cleaned, and painted.  No mold has been found in this process.  

The letter continues to say that while the District has been engaged in discussions with the responsible parties in an effort to correct these conditions, the District has determined that at this time the filing of a formal lawsuit is necessary to protect the District's rights. 

The District will continue to seek an appropriate resolution from the responsible parties that includes the costs to repair these conditions, which the District's retained experts currently estimate to be over one million dollars ($1,000,000.00).   

The architect, construction manager, and contractors who participated in the construction program have been named in this lawsuit:  Liollio Architecture, Martin Engineering, Gulfstream Construction, Celek & Celek Construction, Harrell's Grading, and Cumming Construction Management (formerly Southern Management Group).  The complaint has been filed in Jasper County Court of Common Pleas by the District's attorneys and will be served promptly on all the other parties.   

The District adds that they will continue to strive for a fair and efficient conclusion of these matters to avoid any unnecessary impact on the taxpayers of the District.

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