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Work underway to replace Sidney Glen Elementary’s tile roof

The buckets that line the rafters at Sidney Glen Elementary School soon will be cleared.

That is because work began June 30 to replace the school’s leaky roof.

“That’s a project we’ve needed to do for a long time,” said Tom O’Brien, director of facilities and operations for the South Kitsap School District. “It was not uncommon to have very, very large leaks coming through the ceiling tiles into some of the offices along the main hallway. One of those was the principal’s office. There were days when he really couldn’t work in there.”

SKSD is not the only district in the region to have issues with tile roofs. Bremerton High School is scheduled to put on a new roof next year and O’Brien said a Shelton school also is in the process of replacing one.

O’Brien said there are a variety of reasons behind Sidney Glen’s issues, including tile not being “the right roof for this community and area.” But O’Brien, who noted that Hidden Creek and Mullenix Ridge elementary schools still has a tile roof, said there were other reasons behind the problems at Sidney Glen.

“I think there were a variety of issues, probably first and foremost was the installation of the product,” he said. “We feel, anyway, it wasn’t lapped properly, which meant we had courses of tile that go across and they basically overlap each other.”

O’Brien said that led to rain finding its way through gaps, particularly on windy days. He said there was a “felt system” that was designed to handle rain that penetrated through the roof, but that system became overwhelmed.

“What we’ve found is that it has just deteriorated over the years to the point where that was no long water tight,” O’Brien said.

SKSD now is in position to replace the roof, O’Brien said, because of revenue generated from the maintenance-and-operations levy passed last year. He said the project at Sidney Glen is much more extensive than the 2009 roof replacement at Orchard Heights Elementary School. O’Brien said the most significant issue at that school was replacing sheetrock with plywood under the roof there. At Sidney Glen, which is 54,378 square feet and opened in 1991, the tiles must be removed and recycled. There also are “thousands upon thousands of linear feet of nailer boards that have to be unscrewed” to place a wooden diaphragm on top of the plywood.

Once that portion of the project is complete, O’Brien said a protective “ice and water shield” will be installed.

“This is a very, very high-quality, self-sealing membrane that actually sticks to the plywood,” O’Brien said. “When you nail down into it, it actually seals around the body of the nail. It lasts forever. You could put that on your house and you wouldn’t even need tiles.

“We don’t want to have another leaky roof.”

The project, which is estimated to run through July, will culminate with the placement of a composition roof. O’Brien said SKSD has budgeted $727,000 for the project. Legends Roofing of Puyallup won the bid.

He said that accounts for $58,000 that SKSD must pay in state sales tax. Public-sector projects, O’Brien said, also run more expensive than home roof replacements because SKSD must follow state contracting regulations, which requires a “journeyman level installer” to be paid $44.41 per hour.

The new roof, O’Brien said, comes with a 30-year guarantee on materials.

“It is a roof that truly will last for the long haul,” O’Brien said.

 

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