The Friendswood ISD board of trustees unanimously voted Dec. 13 to terminate a construction contract with Satterfield & Pontikes Construction, the firm hired to take on renovations and additions at Friendswood High School. The district removed the Houston-based construction company from the project after the high school project's budget ended up being almost $55.2 million—$3.6 million more than originally budgeted.

At the Dec. 13 board meeting, Superintendent Thad Roher recommended to the trustees that the contract with S&P Construction be terminated and for the project to instead be taken out for bid, the same route the district went to build the new Cline Elementary School.

The district now expects to issue a competitive sealed proposal Feb. 2, with a contractor recommendation being presented March 7, according to agenda documents.

At the Nov. 15 board meeting, the project was estimated to cost $58.4 million, with the original budget only allocating $51.6 million for the construction. S&P Construction made multiple changes to the design in an attempt to reduce construction costs; however, the company was unable to bring the cost under the amount allocated by the district's $128 million bond approved in 2020.

"This bond has gone through unprecedented times," Roher said. "The goal has remained that we can get the biggest amount of service for our strategic plan ... for the money that we've been gifted from our community."

Costs for the project have been steadily increasing due to rising construction costs, according to S&P Construction.

The high school additions will include a new auditorium and competition gym with renovations happening to the fine arts, and career and technical education classroom spaces, according to agenda documents.

Construction on Friendswood High School is now expected to start in April 2022 and be completed by summer 2023.