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Floor ready for school's future gym


Although Mark Twain Elementary School has no gymnasium, it has a gym floor.

And not just any floor.

Stored away at the Calaveras County Fairgrounds for years are the floorboards from the Oakland Coliseum on which the San Francisco Warriors basketball team used to practice.

The floor was bought at auction years ago for $20,000, said Mark Twain Union Elementary School District Superintendent Rick Brewer, and has been used for sixth- through eighth-grade tournament play at the fairgrounds.

"It still says ‘Warriors' on it," he said. "It's a beautiful floor."

The floor soon could bear the pounding of practicing athletes again. The district board last night voted unanimously to hire Stafford Associate Architects to build a joint-use gymnasium on the Mark Twain Elementary campus.

That construction will bring the floor home, so to speak.

Stafford executive Michael Stafford said that with modular sections, the new 9,000-square-foot gymnasium can be designed and built within the district's $3 million budget.

He said that his firm is working with Calaveras Unified School District and several other Mother Lode schools.

"Right now we're doing five gyms," he said.

Because timing is crucial to the project, with the state joint-use funding running out, Stafford proposed using a standard gymnasium plan that has been accepted by the state architect for other school sites.

"Then we'll spend some time to customize the building to Mark Twain," Stafford said.

Of the 10 architectural firms that submitted proposals for the project, Stafford's estimate of $150 to $155 a square foot was considerably less than the other bidders, Brewer said.

In other action, the board also approved a $49,837 contract with QuadKnopf Environmental Consultants of Visalia and Roseville, for California Environmental Quality Act consulting on a Copperopolis site proposed to hold a new elementary school. The district is making sure the Copper Cove Road site will meet state standards before going further with plans to possibly build a campus there.

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