Board of Education to consider design contracts for remaining projects under 2012 bond program

Administrators are recommending that the HISD Board of Education authorize the district to negotiate design contracts with 13 firms on the remaining 14 projects within the 2012 bond program.

The latest round of contract recommendations comes ahead of schedule in response to the booming construction market in Houston. Although architect selections for schools in Groups 3 and 4 of the program weren’t slated to take place until next year, the district wanted to move forward as quickly as possible to minimize the impact of escalating construction inflation.

HISD officials reviewed the qualifications submitted by 55 architectural firms seeking to do work on this portion of the program, which includes seven high schools, four K-8 schools, two schools that serve students in grades 6-12, and one elementary school. Contracts for the first two groups of school projects were awarded in 2013.

As part of the review for the latest round of contracts, the district invited members of each school’s community to hear presentations by the finalists selected for each project. The recommendations are consistent with the feedback received from each school community.

“We look forward to moving these projects ahead of schedule knowing the needs in each school community,” said Robert L. Sands, Jr., Officer, Construction and Facility Services. “Each school’s Project Advisory Team will promptly begin to work facility planners and their design firm to develop and implement the work that was approved in the bond.”

Listed below are the most highly qualified firms recommended for the selected projects:

Askew Elementary School Cre8 Architects Incorporated
Austin High School ERO Archictects
Garden Oaks Montessori K-8 Hill Swart Chu Architects
Jordan High School Corgan Associates, Inc. dba Corgan
Kashmere High School Natex Corporation
Madison High School Morris Architects
Pilgrim Academy K-8 RDC Architects
Sam Houston Math, Science & Technology Center Stantec Architecture
Scarborough High School Randall – Porterfield Architects
Sharpstown International School Autoarch Architects
Westbury High School Joiner Partnership
Wharton Dual Language School K-8 H. Munoz & Company
Wilson Montessori School K-8 Smith & Company Architects
Young Women’s College Prep Natex Corporation

The Board of Education will consider the recommendations at its meeting at 5 p.m. on Oct. 9 2014, in the Hattie Mae White Educational Support Center (4400 West 18th Street).

All the firms were evaluated using several criteria, including experience, quality of services, and commitment to HISD’s stated goals for participation by minority- and women-owned business enterprises (M/WBEs).

Eight of the 13 firms (or 61.5 percent of the firms) being recommended are certified M/WBEs, which means that they are at least 51 percent owned by one of the following groups: African American, Hispanic American, Asian American, Native American or women. The other five companies have committed to contracting between 25 and 55 percent of their work to M/WBE consultants.

The total combined M/WBE commitment made by all firms in this recommendation is more than 65 percent. Overall, the total combined commitment made by all design firms will ensure more than 53 percent participation by M/WBE firms for all projects in the 2012 bond program. HISD’s minimum M/WBE goal levels are 20 percent for all levels of purchasing and construction and 25 percent for professional services.