Design, engineering on Central HS project to start immediately in wake of approved referendum

Design and engineering of building improvements at Central High School will begin immediately, district officials said Wednesday after the successful passage of a $39.6 million referendum in Tuesday’s election.

The vote final preliminary vote totals were Yes 2,439 (52.56 percent) and No 2.201 (47.44 percent).

“I’m excited for the students, staff and community in what this project
will provide moving forward,” School Board President Steve Richer said. “On behalf of the entire school board, I would like to thank the community for their support in the referendum and the willingness to promote the advancement of the district.”

Work presented as being authorized by the referendum included: Safety and security improvements, construction of additions for a cafeteria, gymnasium, locker rooms and classrooms; renovating and facility improvements, including modernizing classrooms and learning spaces, converting the existing cafeteria into an auditorium and the existing locker rooms into a weight room/fitness center; building systems and infrastructure updates; site improvements; and acquisition of furnishing, fixtures and equipment.

District administrator John Gendron said:

I would like to thank the entire Westosha Central Community for their
support, questions, and feedback throughout this process. Central is a great school and a cornerstone of our community, largely in part to the continued support of our stakeholders. We are confident that the additions and upgrades will further strengthen our school and community.”

Improvements will be completed in phases, with final completion in
late 2023, a news release issued Wednesday said.

According to the news release, the approval will allow the district to invest up to $39.6 million to:

● Enhance Safety & Security — Modify the main entrance to better monitor and control visitor access; upgrade/add security cameras and exterior locks; and revise drop-off/pick-up traffic flow.

● Upgrade Building Infrastructure — Replace lighting, flooring, ceilings, and walls; remove asbestos; replace sections of roof; and update plumbing, heating/ventilation, and electrical systems that have exceeded their useful life.

● Modernize Educational Spaces — Create and renovate spaces to provide better access to technology, flexible furniture, small-group instruction spaces, and modern art, choir, and Family & Consumer Science areas.

● Expand Activities & Performing Arts Areas — o Add a new gymnasium and cafeteria/commons and renovate the existing cafeteria to become an
auditorium to support physical education, performing arts programs, and community events.

The successful referendum follows nearly two years of facility planning, evaluation of a facility study, a community-wide survey, and numerous public engagement sessions.


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