Groundbreaking-Rim Country Middle School

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Bobette Tomerlin, Payson school district assistant superintendent of business services, explains to Mary Wolfe the architectural drawings for construction and renovations at a groundbreaking ceremony Monday afternoon for Rim Country Middle School.

Parents of students at Rim Country Middle School, as well as teachers and staff, are going to have to make some adjustments when dropping off and picking up their kids now that construction has started at the school.

Senior Project Manager for W. E. O'Neil Michael E. Marr said fencing would go up in the next two weeks to section off areas under construction.

After spring break on March 17, actual construction will begin at the school. It will be done in two phases slated for completion in August 2009. The first phase involves grading and leveling of the site.

"This phase will disrupt staff, visitor parking and student drop-off," said district officials.

Rim Country Middle School Principal Monica Nitzche said parents need to be patient and allow more time to drop off and pick up their kids.

"It's not a problem we can't deal with, but it will require some adjustments on the part of the school and parents," said Nitzche.

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School district officials,(from left to right) Payson Unified School District Superintendent Casey O'Brien, governing board President Vicki Holmes, members Mike Horton, Charles Brown, Don Engler, Ron Huff, RCMS principal Monica Nitzche, student representative Karessa Armstrong and Rim Country Middle School Student Body President Sid Pearce turn soil at Monday's groundbreaking ceremony at RCMS. The rebuilding of the school will cost about $8.9 million.

"W. E. O'Neil will construct a temporary student drop-off in the existing north parking lot in front of the middle school gym," said Construction Project Manager Henry Halikowski with Pinnacle One Construction.

"All students will enter the campus through a temporary student walkway on the west side of the gym multi-purpose building," he added.

Teachers and staff will park in the dome parking lot starting right after spring break on March 17.

Parents attending school events can park in the Payson High School stadium parking lot off of Longhorn Avenue, said Halikowski.

"Limited visitor parking will be available in front of the current administration building," said Halikowski.

The district's bond construction project began Monday afternoon as district and school officials, along with student representatives, participated in a groundbreaking ceremony at Rim Country Middle School.

The groundbreaking marks the first of the projects at Rim Country Middle and Julia Randall Elementary Schools.

New construction and renovations at Rim Country Middle School will cost about $8.9 million of the taxpayer approved bond money.

The new student drop-off area is scheduled for completion when school starts in the fall. Marr said he plans to relocate to Payson within the next few weeks to supervise the project.

"I'm in the process of renting a house here and as soon as I can get moved up here I will be on site every day," said Marr.

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