Construction Watch: Florida district’s repair program soars to $436 million over budget

Many projects to repair dilapidated schools are coming in at 50% or more than expected, others have had to be redesigned due to flaws that led to failed inspections
By: | August 16, 2019
Stranahan High is one of many schools in Broward County facing long delays and skyrocketing costs for repairs.Stranahan High is one of many schools in Broward County facing long delays and skyrocketing costs for repairs.

A long-delayed Broward County Public Schools renovation program is now expected to cost an extra $436 million, leading the Florida district’s school board members to demand a plan for how the work will get done. Five years after voters approved an $800 million bond referendum to repair dilapidated schools, only seven of the 234 schools are complete, with 55 under construction. Many projects have been stuck with architects for two or three years and have had to be redesigned because of flaws that led to failed inspections. And many projects under construction are coming in at 50% or more over budget. The cost to repair the 68-year-old Stranahan High in Fort Lauderdale, for example, climbed from $11 million to $28 million. The bond program was supposed to be complete by 2021, but district officials have moved that back to at least 2023. Read more.