Work has begun on a $19 million expansion/renovation project at Annville-Cleona’s secondary school.

District superintendent Krista M. Antonis said the project was launched earlier in July and is projected to finish by December 2024.

Construction, which will add approximately 26,324 square feet to the school, should not interfere with classes this coming school year, Antonis added.

“We’re looking to do most of the work during the summer months,” she said. “It will have minimal impact on classes.”

Components of the project include renovations to the cafeteria, expanding it out the back to add more space for students; the addition of an LGI, or large-group instruction room, which can be converted into three individual classrooms if needed; renovations and expansions to the main gymnasium, wrestling room and locker rooms; renovations to the stadium, adding two team rooms under the home bleachers, updating the concession stand, providing additional restroom facilities and making the bleachers and sidewalks ADA compliant; renovations to the metal and wood shop; additions to the office and conference room space; and additions to the auxiliary gym, fitness center, and PE classroom.

“Our enrollment is starting to increase in our district,” Antonis said. “This is an area where we can start to account for that.”

ADA compliance at the stadium has been on the district’s radar for “quite some time,” she added.

“We didn’t have ramps. Our bleacher seating didn’t have hand rails,” the superintendent explained. Although the stadium had been grandfathered in under previous regulations, she said the school administration has been wanting to bring the stadium up to current codes.

The weight room was undersized for the school’s current enrollment, she said, and an expansion to the fitness center will make it more useful to the community as well as to students.

The LGI expansion will add flexibility “to redivide into additional classrooms to help with our future projected growth,” Antonis said. And some improvements to the ag tech area will upgrade an academic focus area that hasn’t “been renovated and updated with new technologies in about 17 years.”

Bids awarded in May

“Enrollment, community use and accessibility were really the primary drivers of this project,” Antonis said.

Current population projections show the project should accommodate enrollment at the secondary school “for a fairly significant period of time, at least 10 years,” Antonis said. The school currently houses about 700 students, she said.

The expansion will not necessitate any additional staffing, she noted.

Construction won’t change the building profile in the front of the school, she added. Most of the work will be in the back of the building.

The Annville-Cleona school board awarded bids totaling just over $19 million at its May 8 meeting.

According to meeting minutes, a base bid of nearly $10 million was awarded to ECI Construction for general construction of the project.

Additionally, an electrical contract was awarded to Cedar Electric for a base bid of $1.99 million, an HVAC contract was awarded to Frey Lutz for a base bid for $1.54 million, a contract for bleacher construction was awarded to Southern Bleachers for a base bid of $1.4 million, a plumbing contract was awarded to Vision Mechanical for a base bid of $1.3 million, and a roofing contract was awarded to Hauck Roofing for a base bid of $1.19 million.

Funding for the project will come from the district’s fund balance and new bond issues, Antonis said.

Looking ahead, Antonis said the next building project will likely be at one of the district’s elementary schools.

“We’re still reviewing our feasibility study,” she said.

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Tom has been a professional journalist for nearly four decades. In his spare time, he plays fiddle with the Irish band Fire in the Glen, and he reviews music, books and movies for Rambles.NET. He lives with his wife, Michelle, and has four children: Vinnie, Molly, Annabelle and Wolf.


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