Construction bid opening for new middle school set for May 16

By Susan Mustapich | May 14, 2018
Source: File photo

CAMDEN — Two construction bids for the new Camden Rockport Middle School will be opened May 16 at 2 p.m. in the SAD 28 Central office on Lions Lane.

The two bidders are Ledgewood Construction of South Portland and PC Construction, headquartered in Vermont, with a location in Portland.

SAD 28's bid requests went out in mid-April to four prequalified general contractors, according to Superintendent Maria Libby's May report to the School Board. Two of the companies, Sheridan and Landry French, pulled out of the process because of other projects.

Education construction work constitutes a substantial portion of Ledgewood's portfolio, according to the company's website. The portfolio includes new school construction, renovation and additions in Maine, including the Islesboro Central School.

PC Construction has a portfolio of new learning facilities, renovations and energy and infrastructure upgrades on college and high school campuses. The porfolio includes an addition to South Portland High School and a central heating plant expansion at Colby College.

Tom McNealy is the top candidate for the clerk of the works position for the construction project. Libby reported that he currently has offers to oversee three other school projects, but is holding out for the CRMS project because he enjoys working with Oak Point Senior Architect Tyler Barter.

Libby also reported that bids for the middle school construction bond would be opened May 30.

Naming new theater

Plans include a new 250-seat theater to replace the current 90-plus-seat theater, allowing the middle school to present its own plays, have class meetings and make the space available to the community.

Libby is proposing the name Bisbee Theater, after Dr. Walter Frank Bisbee, a longtime Camden resident who was a "prominent dentist and businessman who died in 1937." He was an avid sportsman and founder of the Camden Fish and Game Association, racing horses at the Camden Snow Bowl, hunting and playing baseball, she reported.

Bisbee left the equivalent of $25,000 to establish a fund to benefit local students, according to Libby. The Walter Bisbee Trust has grown over the years to a value of more than $14 million, she said. Funds have been used for the Washington, D.C., senior high school trip since 1985, taken eighth-grade students rafting and to Camp Kieve, and sent multi-age students to Hurricane Island, provided art residencies at CRES, helped to create the CRMS school song, and taken high school students to Latin conventions in New York City and has contributed to prom, homecoming and music competitions.

"There is no question that Walter Bisbee has made an extraordinary contribution to our school system, likely more than any other individual in our history, and it is likely that his gift will continue to fund enrichment activities in our school system for generations to come," Libby said.. She believes that immortalizing his name on one of the school system's buildings is long overdue.

Comments (1)
Posted by: Mary A McKeever | May 14, 2018 16:00

I agree with Ms. Libby's comment that Camden should immortalize Walter Bisbee on the schools building. Such generosity will never be forgotten by Camdenites.

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