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Palm Beach School Board Acquisition of Relocatable Classrooms Examined, April 2002, Report No. 02-23, April 2002
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The Palm Beach County School District forecasts student enrollment to increase by 18,000 students by Fiscal Year 2006-07. The district plans over the next five years to construct 21 new schools, to modernize 35 existing facilities, and to use relocatable classrooms during construction.

In response to a legislative request, OPPAGA examined the planned purchase of concrete relocatable classrooms. Concrete units are more expensive than models with metal stud walls. Both types meet state building code standards.

  • The district plans to spend $35 million over five years to purchase 500 concrete relocatables.
  • The district’s purchase price for concrete relocatables is higher than prices for similar units in other districts.  Concrete relocatables are more expensive to purchase and move than alternative types of relocatables, but have the appearance of permanent construction and may have a longer life.
  • If the district purchases 500 concrete units as planned, it will spend approximately $12.7 million more for these units over the five-year period than if it had bought metal stud wall units.  In addition, it costs $1,150 more to move a concrete unit to another location than a metal stud unit.
  • The district reasoned that concrete units were more durable and safer.  However, the district did not conduct a life cycle cost analysis prior to its decision.  To better justify future relocatable expenditures, we recommend that the board conduct life cycle cost analyses to compare available relocatables.

Which Government Program Summaries contain related information?

Educational Facilities

    Copies of this report in print or alternate accessible format may be obtained by telephone (850/488-0021), by FAX (850/487-9213), in person, or by mail (OPPAGA Report Production, Claude Pepper Building, Room 312, 111 W. Madison St., Tallahassee, FL 32399-1475).
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