Brookfield-LaGrange Park School District 95 came one step closer last week to finishing the planning process for construction projects at its two schools, with the completion of drawings for the Brook Park School addition and S.E. Gross Middle School renovation by the district architect.

Superintendent Thomas Hurlburt announced the completion of the plans at the school board’s July 12 meeting. After the district’s general contractor, Gilbane Construction, reviews and finalizes the plans, he said, the district will be ready to go out for bids on the Brook Park addition.

“It seems like we’re moving full steam ahead,” said board member Thomas Powers.

Gilbane representative Dennis Wills explained to the board that the final review of the plans should be completed by the end of this week. He said he had been working with the district’s architect, FGM Architects Planners Inc., in making some revisions to the drawings, mostly concerning mechanical, electrical and plumbing issues.

“Basically what I’m doing right now is reviewing the drawings for two reasons: to update my estimates, and also to see if they’re complete enough for bidding,” he said.

Wills said the edits made to the drawings so far would not significantly affect construction costs, estimated at $9.32 million with a 5 percent contingency. At most, he said, the district might have to spend more of its contingency funds than originally anticipated, but total spending should still come in about $300,000 under the overall budget.

Once the drawings are finalized, Hurlburt said, copies will be available for viewing at both schools and the district office at S.E. Gross School, 3524 Maple Ave. in Brookfield.

As for the Brook Park bidding process, Wills said the district is still on schedule to award a construction contract by the end of August. Construction at Brook Park, which is located at 30th Street and Raymond Avenue in LaGrange Park, will begin in the fall and go through the school year, while the S.E. Gross renovation will be started next summer. Both projects are expected to be completed before the start of the 2008-09 school year.