The renovation of the Miller-Driscoll School complex may take several years and require students to learn in portable classrooms, at least temporarily.
That's according to Karen Birck of the Wilton Board of Education, who's been involved with the renovation project since its 2006 inception. Birck, providing an update on the project, told the Board of Selectmen Monday night that there's currently no precise architectural designs or blueprints for the project.
"There are a lot of details that need to be worked out," she said.
Because of that, "we’re not sure how the project would proceed," she said, adding it was the building committee's intention the project would cause the "least possible disruption to the educational program." Birck said some students might have to be taught in portable classrooms while the work is being completed.
Selectman Hal Clark asked Birck what she envisioned the hardest part of the project would be.
"It's going to take several years," she said.
Birck said a study conducted on the existing facility determined the Miller and Driscoll structures were well-built. While the town had wondered whether to build a new facility altogether, Birck said that in order to keep within budget, it's more prudent to renovate the existing structures in order to extend their lives an additional 20 years.
"The moving of large interior masonry walls is very expensive," Birck said. "We've eliminated enlarging the classrooms."
Birck said the scope of the project now includes fixing the roof, skylights, steel siding, drains, windows, indoor air quality systems, electrical system, fire alarms and security system.
The project also includes "updat[ing] the technology infrastructure to meet the demand we now have for technology," and other site improvements, such as installing an access road, unifying the exterior of the building (Miller and Driscoll used to be separate schools) and constructing a single K-2 entrance.
First Selectman William Brennan said the next step will be presenting before the Council on Public Facilities. The project's steering committee, Brennan said, should also come up with a placeholder price tag for the project.
"We've got a menu of things we want to do, so we have to get some idea of a preliminary cost," he said.
Brennan said he hopes the project's building committee will meet in April.