A heavy equipment operator goes to work on the Craig Middle School building Tuesday. The Neenan Company crews are scheduled to continue demolition on the building through July 4, project superintendent Doug Young said.

Photo by Hans Hallgren

A heavy equipment operator goes to work on the Craig Middle School building Tuesday. The Neenan Company crews are scheduled to continue demolition on the building through July 4, project superintendent Doug Young said.

Crews begin leveling Craig Middle School

Project superintendent: Demolition on schedule


Story at a glance

• The Neenan Company began demolition on the two-story portion of the existing Craig Middle School building Tuesday.

• The project is on schedule, project superintendent Doug Young said.

• Demolition of the administration offices and cafeteria are slated to start next week.

• Neenan crews also are scheduled to begin drilling screws in the ground that will the building's new foundation next week.

• Demolition is scheduled to continue through July 4.

On Wednesday, the second day of demolition, The Neenan Company crews already had taken a noticeable chunk out of the south wing of the Craig Middle School building.

Heavy equipment clawed through wood and brick, creating growing piles of debris and exposing the interior of the 60-year-old facility. An empty green chalkboard from what was once a second-story classroom could be seen suspended on the wall above the busily moving machines.

Demolition on the building's two-story portion began Tuesday, marking the next phase in a project funded by a $29.5 million bond issue voters approved in November 2007.

Next week, Neenan crews will begin tearing down the single-story section of the south wing, which includes the school's administration offices and cafeteria.

"Everything's going pretty well," project superintendent Doug Young said. Asbestos removal before demolition "went really well."

State officials had to verify that asbestos was removed from the building before crews could begin demolition.

"We had the state come out and they did their clearances," Young said, "and everything was signed off" last week.

Demolition is scheduled to continue through July 4, he said, and will remove most of the building but will spare the existing auditorium, gym and industrial arts facilities. These rooms will be integrated into the new middle school.

After the site is cleared of debris, crews will begin restabilizing the ground at the building's location, or "footprint," Young said.

The Neenan Company will begin preparing for the new building while demolishing the old one. Next week, crews are scheduled to begin placing steel reinforcements in the ground that will support the new building's foundation.

Each reinforcement is "like a big screw," Young said. The screws are either 3 or 5 inches in diameter and measure 35 feet in length.

Ultimately, Neenan employees will place about 500 reinforcements throughout the new building's footprint.

Unforeseen circumstances could arise to set the project off schedule.

"That's always the case," Young said. "If something doesn't show up, it could make a big difference."

However, as it stands now, building timelines have gone according to plan.

"We're on schedule," Young said.

Bridget Manley can be reached at 875-1795 or bmanley@craigdailypress.com.


jjcarver 8 years, 9 months ago

While looking at the picture of the destruction of the Craig Middle School I have a lot of mixed feelings. I went to High School in that building and spent 4 years storing memories of that time. It was a happy time and I hate to see it go. But I also realize that eventually the buildings go to make way for new facilities. I guess I am holding on to memories of the happy time in MOCOHI. I spent a lot of time in that building and I am reminded of how during wrestling season run laps in the halls. Up the stairs in the south section and down the hall and down the stairs and again down the hall to the stairs once again. In 1962 I was the Colorado Heavy Weight State Champion and I cherrish these memories. But time marches on and the new becomes ofd and must be cleared to make new for new once again.


Ray Cartwright 8 years, 9 months ago

Oh the memories for me too. Sitting on the sidelines during baseball and basketball games while the favorite sons got to play the game cause mommy and daddy helped out. So you can see it wouldn't hurt if they took out the baseball field too. Sitting in the Classroom and taking the belittling from the teachers cause I wasn't as smart as some.

Now don't worry; I got over all of that and didn't even think about taking a weapon to school and still don't; but then again I don't have a lot of respect for the MOCOHI system of favoritism.


Cole White 8 years, 9 months ago

How come the romans, egyptians, greek, early american settlers, english, french (even the french for crying out loud), russians, chinese, etc can build building that last longer than 50 or 60 years? We get a building that is fifty years old and have it condemned and tear it down and build a new one. My dad went to school in a building that was 50 years old when he was in the second grade and they are still using it today (its about 90 years old now). Just curious.


lonelyone 8 years, 9 months ago

I've often wondered why they couldn't just spruce it up like they did the admin building a few years ago? As for other countries keeping their old stuff.........well heck, I suppose they built better then we did?!?!?! lol


Taxpayer 8 years, 9 months ago

Remember, the citizens voted for the new school, and it appears the voters had on rose colored glasses and felt new was better than saving it. It's too bad as a group we didn't start asking more questions -- but in Craig/Moffat County, asking a questions to give clarity or to receive more information means you are negative . It's either "you are with us, or you are against us" whenever you want clarity. If you question any financial data provided, you also are painted with a negativity. It is so sad. :-(


50cal 8 years, 9 months ago

taxpayer put it on the ballot enough times and eventually with a boom on enough new people will vote on it. lonely, remember when the new highschool was built? started sliding down the hill during the first year? Can't keep water in the pool? well this is the same situation. THe old building was just standing up to well for the school districts needs. they said they couldn't put new technology in every classroom. (ever here of a drop ceiling?) So at least this new building can't slide down a hill and won't have drop ceilings to hide those pesky wiring problems. Don't worry though when the boom goes bust and the new people take their jobs and go to greener pastures the school district won't ask us with roots here for more, nor will the hospital board or the commitee for a new rec center.


redneckgirl 8 years, 9 months ago

I just got my new escrow statment in the mail on my property taxes......it went up $30 A MONTH ...and I didn't vote for this yet I have to pay for it. I was paying a little extra towards my principal but now I won't be able to since my taxes are escrowed into my mortgage. Having teenage boys, my grocery bill is almost as much as my mortgage now. Holy Cow!


lonelyone 8 years, 9 months ago

Redncekgirl, I feel your pain. It's bad enough when there are just two people to worry about, but when you have to pay for all the things kids need too, it can at times get to be to much. Add to the mess that the utilities companies are raising rates. Gas going up, groceries, meds, and Taxslaves personal favorite..........TP......just kidding Tax. Take all of this into the mix and it's not a pretty picture. It's got to stop sometime..........doesn't it???


50cal 8 years, 9 months ago

now remember that these milllevies are only a small percentage so noone will be hurt redneckgirl. Did your property value go up as well? mine sure did. gotta love that too huh?


calvinhobbs 8 years, 9 months ago

The building did have a drop ceiling, that was not the tech problem. 1 or 2 outlets per room, no GFCI outlets and numerous were ungrounded, old wires, over loaded circuits, leaky roofs, cracks in the walls you could see outside on. Windows that were so poor a glass of water would freeze if it was next to it over night with the heat on. Drain pipes that ran in the outside walls that froze in November and thawed in March. Rusted out main water lines, A valley roof design on the north wing that leaked since the early 60's and never could get fixed, hi lead and copper levels in the drinking fountains due to 60 yr old pipes, just to name a few. May I ask, how old is your home? 60 years old? How about the car? It becomes cost effective to quit putting money into something and build for the future.


cacmt 8 years, 9 months ago

I was just wondering if anyone knew the situation on the asbestos in the building? I was told by a school district employee that was also a problem but was wondering if anyone had any further details?


50cal 8 years, 9 months ago

my god I never realized that all these problems existed. Christ now we need a new high school as well because it has the same fricken problems. Ever here of maintainance may I ask? if your people can't fix the problems find someone who can. I don't remember all these problems when I went to school there and the winters were much colder then. I don't remember the last time a kid got electricuted there either because of no gfi outlets


WileyWapiti 8 years, 9 months ago

I have mixed feelings, change is good and if it gives the kids a better environment to learn and possibly make available opportunities that were not evident before, than I am for it. But the other side of my brain tells me that a new penny spends the same as a 50 year old penny - hell, it doesn't even have to be shiny. Can you even buy gumballs for a penny anymore? I will be sad with the new construction, my buddy who comes up from Denver to hunt with me, we always looked forward to heading out of town and seeing the deer eating the grass at the school - guess that will have to wait a year or so.


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