BLACKFOOT – Construction projects for both Blackfoot School District 55 and Snake River School District 52 are well on their way to being completed, just in time for the school year to begin in both districts.

The Snake River Construction, which has been ongoing since spring semester ended in May, has been the most involved project as it has dealt with the entire replacement of the sewer system at Snake River High School, Snake River Junior High School, and a sewer line that runs from the high school down Highway 39 and is connected to the Blackfoot system, and despite encountering a few minor setbacks it remains ahead of schedule to be completed.

“We are happy to say that the sewer project remains ahead of schedule,” Snake River David Kearns said Monday. “We expect that everything will remain on schedule and that the last of the dirt removal and laying of the asphalt will go according to plan and finish up in time for the opening of school.”

The $1.5 million project not only is reaching completion on time, but will be a welcome completion for the students, teachers and administration of the schools involved.

The failure of a septic system required the replacement of all sewer lines and necessitated the replacement of a drain field that had long since exceeded its expected life.

The Blackfoot School District project is the installation of a new bus hub and turnaround area at Mountain View Middle School and its reciprocating hub located between Stoddard Elementary and Blackfoot High School.

The MVMS portion of the project is nearly complete and has had asphalt laid down, sealed, and painted with only a few portions remaining to complete along the east side of the school in the old turn-around area.

The new portion also included some adjustments to the teachers’ parking facility and has opened up the area for loading and unloading of students, restricting the bus flow to the front of the school building which is a much safer area for the buses and students. That area is complete and ready for use.

The high school area, which includes a new entrance for use by the buses and diagonal parking in the space between the BPAC and Stoddard Elementary School, will provide for space for up to 22 buses for the loading and unloading of students. This will eliminate the need for buses to line up on Fisher Street, which was not as safe as the new plan.

The final preparation of the ground was expected to be completed either Monday or today and will be ready for the asphalt to be laid down, sealed and painted this week.

The project also includes the expansion of the teachers’ parking lot on the east side of Stoddard and it is also nearly ready for the final installation of asphalt this week.

“We are happy that this construction phase is coming to a close in time for the beginning of the school year,” Blackfoot Superintendent Brian Kress said. “It has been our big project for this summer and everything looks good as we head into the school year.”

The completion of these two projects is a reminder that the school year is just around the corner and that all persons on the road around any of the schools in the area will have students and parents on the move and that extra care needs to be taken while traveling around any of the school zones in the area.

This will also be a time that buses will be stopping on the highways as well and law enforcement will be watching for violations going through stop arms.