The Perry School Board met in a special session on Monday, Oct. 15. The board members heard a presentation during the meeting from Carl A. Nelson and Co. from Des Moines.


Dan Culp and Nick Liston talked to the board members about the benefits of hiring a construction manager for the school district’s upcoming facility improvement project.


The district is looking to construct a Career and Technical Education addition to the existing high school building, along with constructing a wrestling room addition. The district hired SVPA Architects to design the plans during the Aug. 13 school board meeting.


The school board heard from Carl A. Nelson and Co. during the Oct. 15 special meeting.


Culp told the board that three factors in hiring a construction manager are trust, value and freedom.


The trust, he said, comes from the company’s past projects. Carl A. Nelson and Co. has not worked with the Perry school district before, so Culp said the board should look at its past experience.


He added that the company has been involved with a number of successful bond referendum projects.


The value comes from the services that the company provides.


“We’re not doing the design, but we’re actually critiquing the design and looking for better ways to do it and adding value to your project,” Culp said.


The freedom factor comes from the management services the company provides. Culp said Liston would manage the project so the district doesn’t have to manage it on its own.


“That’s where a lot of the peace of mind comes from having a construction manager involved in the project,” Culp said.


Superintendent Clark Wicks asked where Carl A. Nelson and Co. would fit into the district’s project as they are entering the design phase.


Culp said they work with architects a lot of the time from the very conceptual part of the project all the way through to the end.


“We’re very good at listening to an owner and them describing what they want,” Culp said. And then they work on translating that to the architect.


“We don’t have a contractual obligation to the design team, to the architect. So we work under the owner, we’re the owner’s advocate,” Liston said.


He added that when Carl A. Nelson comes to the table during the pre-construction phase with the architect, they are looking out for Perry’s best interest.


The school board took no action on the presentation during the special session.