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Residents get first look at HHS details on Tuesday

Those interested in the long-running Hendersonville High School saga will get a first detailed look at plans for the $60 million Stillwell renovation and new construction plan when the city hosts a neighborhood compatibility meeting at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday at the City Operations Center, 305 Williams St.


The School Board this week filed an application to rezone the campus from PID, Planned Institutional Development to PIDCZD, Planned Institutional Development Conditional Zoning District, for the project, which includes renovation of the historic core classroom building and auditorium and the Jim Pardue gym and demolition and replacement of the lunchroom, band room and vocational-ed building.

Meanwhile, the Board of Commissioners on Monday authorized the first major construction work for the project, which will take place this summer. The architects for the job, PFA and LS3P, and construction manager Vannoy Construction said that the sewer line and stormwater work needs to be done this summer if the job is to done by the first day of school in August 2023.

The lowest responsive bidder for the first phase was Candler-based Tennoca Construction Company, at $1,351,490.

Commissioner Michael Edney, who serves on the joint facilities committee with Commissioner Bill Lapsley and School Board members and school administrators, expressed frustration that commissioners had not been told earlier about the work.

“Because they don’t give us anything, we don’t know anything," he said. "We’re supposed to be in the loop on everything.”

John Mitchell, the county's director of business and community development, told commissioners that the School Boad had filed the rezoning application, which must be approved by the City Council after review by planning staff and the Planning Board. Lapsley asked whether commissioners ought to attend.

"We don’t need to go through the same things we went through three years ago,” Lapsley said, referring to the city Planning Board's 5-3 vote recommending denial of the county's rezoning application for HHS rezoning. In that case, the county commissioners had decided on an all-new construction plan that did not keep the historic classroom building as part of the school.