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Tuesday,  July 23 , 2024

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News / Clark County News

Washougal High’s 25-year-old roof with ‘major leaks’ to be replaced

By Doug Flanagan, Post-Record staff writer
Published: July 9, 2024, 6:08am

WASHOUGAL — Washougal School District leaders have determined that they cannot wait any longer to replace Washougal High School’s aging roof.

The district is preparing to solicit construction bids later this year for a roof replacement project, which it hopes to begin in spring 2025 and complete by the start of the 2025-26 school year, according to Les Brown, the district’s communications and information technology director.

“(This project is) going to extend the use and the life of the whole roof system for 25 to 30-plus years, depending on what materials are used,” Finance Director Kris Grindy said during a June 11 school board meeting. “We know that this is important. A longer-lasting roof does require less ongoing maintenance and patch jobs.”

The deterioration of the current composition shingle roof, which was part of the high school’s last remodel in the late 1990s, has led to major leaks that have caused water damage in the building, according to a school district report.

“If you have students at Washougal High School, I’m sure you have heard about leaks,” Facilities Director Jessica Beehner said. “This time of the year, they get better, but wintertime, winter break, is not usually a good time.”

The roof-replacement was included in the district’s capital projects and information technology levy approved by voters in April 2023. It will start collecting those levy funds in May 2025.

“I really am excited about what it could look like — but also that ensures that we don’t have to go out and ask our taxpayers in 10, 15, 20 years for a completely new building,” former Superintendent Mary Templeton said during the June 11 meeting. “The amount that it costs to build a new building today is stunning.”

Brown said the overall Washougal High School building could last as long as the new roof.

“Space-wise, we’re pretty well situated there,” he said. “We’re not outgrowing the building. It was built for roughly 1,200 students when you incorporate the Excelsior building, so they have plenty of room. They’re not overcrowded or anything like that. We obviously can’t predict the future, but the hope is that, with some really prudent long-term (decisions) that keep the entire building sound, it’ll last for another 30 years.”