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Port High walls go up as winter closes in PDF Print E-mail
Written by BILL SCHANEN IV   
Wednesday, 08 November 2017 21:02

Construction crews on schedule but racing weather to enclose second phase of $45.6 million school project that includes arena-style gym, commons

    The walls of Port Washington High School’s arena-style gym could begin going up this week as construction crews race the weather to enclose the new central part of the school before the worst of winter sets in.
    “The weather has been great so far, and we’re in great shape to have the new buildings enclosed to they can work inside over the winter,” Supt. Michael Weber said Tuesday. “We’re on schedule and on budget.”
    The oldest part of the school, which housed the main offices as well as science, math, business and art classrooms, has been demolished to make way for a new main entrance, offices, counseling department, commons, gym, cafeteria and music rooms currently being constructed in phase two of the $46.5 million high school project.
 PORT LG   There will also be a school store near the main entrance that will sell Port High Pirates apparel and other items, Principal Eric Burke said. It will be staffed by members of the school’s DECA marketing and business club during events, he said.
    Phase one of the project, completed in April, was the construction of a three-story academic wing built into the hill on the northwest end of the school. The state-of-the-art classrooms have been in use since the beginning of this school year.
    Footings for the new central part of the school are in place, and on Thursday the precast concrete walls of the gym are expected to begin arriving, Weber said.
    The gym, commons and cafeteria will be key features of the new part of the school. The main entrance will lead past the offices and counseling department to the commons, which in addition to serving as a place for students to gather will serve as a reception and concessions area during sports events and performances in the auditorium.
    From the commons, people will be able to look down into the gym, which is being built at a lower level on the south side of the school. Stairs from the commons will also lead into the cafeteria, which will feature a wall of windows facing southwest.
    Construction is scheduled to be completed in December 2018, although some new parts of the school will probably be open when the 2018-19 school year begins in September, Weber said.
    The project includes the construction of a new kitchen, which is to be finished by the beginning of classes in September. Currently, a space designated for foreign language classrooms in the new academic wing is being used as a cafeteria and food is being prepared in the kitchen of St. John XXIII Catholic School, St. Peter’s Campus, on the north side of Port Washington.
    Once the new cafeteria is finished, the foreign language rooms will be finished with flooring and room dividers. That work is expected to be completed in March 2019.
    The final phase of the project is the renovation of the auditorium, which will be gutted to clear the way for a new stage, seating and wall and ceiling acoustic treatments, as well as electrical and sound systems.
    The auditorium will be closed in May 2018 after the last of the spring concerts and is expected to reopen by the beginning of the 2019-20 school year.
    Funding for the high school project was approved by voters in April 2015 as part of a $49.4 million referendum that also provided $3.8 million for the construction of an addition to Dunwiddie Elementary School and new parking lots there.

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Last Updated on Thursday, 09 November 2017 16:45