LEXINGTON — The establishment of the new Lexington Junior High and High School will begin in a matter of weeks, as crews prepare a site pad for the new building.
The Lexington board of education heard a project update Wednesday from Andrew Lowther of Shook Construction. Lowther stated the project will be split into two phases. The first phase will start in August, when contractors break ground and establish a site pad. Crews will also begin construction of a concession stand that will be located south of the building between the new baseball and softball fields.
According to Lowther, the athletic fields (including baseball, softball and two practice soccer fields), bleachers and press boxes will be installed in the spring, bringing phase one to completion by April. A stormwater retention pond will be added south of the fields.
The bleachers at both the baseball and softball fields will seat around 200 spectators each. Use of the baseball and softball fields would commence in 2022. In the meantime, incoming Supt. Jeremy Secrist said the district has arranged for practices to be held the Mansfield Christian fields. School soccer teams will practice at village parks.
The board approved a guaranteed maximum price agreement of $4,220,648.21 for the first phase of the project, meaning the school district will not be responsible for any project costs exceeding that price.
Scott Alleman of ThenDesign Architecture also shared preliminary sketches and blueprints of the junior high and high school building at Wednesday's meeting. Drawings of the new junior high and high school building will be finalized and out to bid near the end of the year, with construction set to begin in early 2021.
The new building will have a high school entrance on the north side of the building and a junior high entry on the south side. Both building entrances will have a secured vestibule with a buzzer and keycard access. A two-way drive will connect the junior high school entrance to State Route 546, while high school drivers will enter from Clever Lane.
Current plans for the first floor of the building include a performing arts center, dining area, art rooms, a courtyard, offices and classrooms. The second floor will house high school science classrooms and labs, the special education department and additional junior high classrooms. Elevator access was moved to better access both wings.
While the building won’t have a traditional library, both the junior high and high school wings will have open concept media collaborative spaces through the building. These spaces will have bookshelves with reference material, individual and group seating and an area for presentations.
The construction of a new seventh through 12th grade building comes after the district passed a 37-year, 8.6 mill bond levy last year. After the middle and high school facility is built, a second one will be constructed to house students in grades pre-kindergarten through six. The new middle and high school building will be at the current location of the baseball and softball fields.