Elyria Schools has had problems with the roof on the school as well as the former roofing contractor hired to complete the job. In 2010, the district had to fire Cleveland-based T&F Systems Inc., and hire a new roofing company in the middle of the project.
Since then, the two sides have been locked in litigation with the district refusing to pay the contract and T&F Systems fighting for payment.
Amy Higgins, the district’s spokeswoman, said the current work at the school and the dispute with the contractor are related.
“These new problems are just an extension of the roof not being installed correctly the first time,” she said.
Jim Wall, the district’s director of Building Services, said the problems with the West Avenue elevation of the building became more evident within the last year when water began seeping in during heavy wind and rain. It was eventually determined that when the roof was installed wall flashing in the masonry work was not properly sealed. It allowed water to infiltrate the building and damage the masonry.
“The way wall flashings work is by catching any water and diverting it outside the building,” Wall said. “It prevents water from higher floors from getting into the building.”
Wall said the construction work is not under warranty and as a result the district had to approve construction costs of more than $100,000.
“We could take this to court first, but litigation would take a year or two,” he said. “That is not to say the board will not want to do that in the future, but we don’t have that time to waste. If we don’t fix it now, it will cause more damage.”
The work is expected to continue through October.
Wall said repairing the wall flashings is tedious work so the integrity of the building is not compromised.
“Basically you work one section at a time and work your way around the building,” he said. “Work near the wrestling room is done and crews are now near the Performing Arts Center.”