Both the Clarkfield City Council and the Yellow Medicine County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to accept a professional consultant bid from Little Falls- based Contegrity Group to assist in the demolition of the old Clarkfield High School. Contegrity will provide technical support to the High School Task Force as they move forward with plans for demolition and to potentially preserve portions of the now derelict structure.

Contegrity’s bid, which came in at $39,000, was one of two bids received by the group. The other bid was from Widseth Smith Nolting & Associates, and was priced at $79,840. In a statement recommending approval for the Contegrity bid, the Task Force said, “Besides the very apparent difference in pricing, the Task Force feels that with Contegrity’s past work on the County’s Courthouse/Justice Center project, they are familiar with our expectations and local area; being able to assist the County with a low cost courthouse demolition cost.”

The Task Force went on to say that “It is important to look to develop definitive numbers for the demolition so that the City of Clarkfield can secure grant and loan funding for their portion of the cost of the project.” The group explained that the “the City was looking to have approximately 6 months to secure additional funding,” adding that “what they are looking to apply for requires that no expenses be incurred prior to the application and award.”

Thus far, the Task Force is keeping up with the schedule they created for the project last month. Between now and December, the city and county will finalize the details in their agreement and “have them begin documenting the project and requesting all necessary permits.

Between January and March, the group will solicit bids from interested contractors for the demolition of the entire building with the exception of the west gym and the adjacent locker room, bathrooms, and weight room (which Clarkfield is hoping to transform into a community center). Currently, demolition is slated for April of next year.

To provide incentives for cost savings, the Task Force is hoping to give the contractors an eight month window for completion. All costs associated with the contracting and demolition are being split evenly between the city and the county.