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Competition to lead to higher construction costs

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - Sioux City education officials say that rising demand for construction in the northwestern Iowa city could lead to higher construction costs for public schools.

Board member Doug Batcheller tells the Sioux City Journal that the district had been the main source of large construction projects throughout the recent recession, which helped keep bids low.

But Batcheller says bids are expected to increase with a casino project, fertilizer plant, new Bishop-Heelan high school and construction at Morningside College all competing for contractors.

Batcheller says the district has averaged less than $110 per square foot to build new schools during the recession. He predicts that will increase to $130 per square foot.

Superintendent Paul Gausman says his is already seeing increased construction costs of about $113 per square foot.

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