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Construction fence signifies start of building at HHS

Three years of construction-altered campus life begins next week when Hendersonville High School students return from the holiday break to find their school grounds fenced off.

Crews on Friday had nearly completed the construction fence that surrounds most of the school's perimeter and segregates student life from a massive demolition and construction scene.

The work actually began last summer when a contractor renovated part of the vocational-ed building for use as the school lunchroom. The more visible phase of stage now under way now includes removal of the band room and cafeteria. The gyms close on July 1, 2020. Renovation of the historic Stillwell auditorium — the space that associate schools Superintendent John Bryant called the "heartbeat of the school" — is scheduled to take place from Sept. 1, 2021, to March 2022.

In the second of three major bid awards, the Board of Commissioners last month authorized $15.8 million in demolition and construction work. The project architects and construction manager, Vannoy Construction, broke the project into three phases in order to meet the projected completion date of August 2023.

The $59.2 million construction job totals 180,468 square feet, including 91,400 square feet of new construction, the Stillwell renovation (68,166 square feet) and the Pardue gym renovation (20,902 square feet). The total cost of $59,133,268 includes $48,833,344 in construction costs and $9,299,924 in soft costs, including $2,415,000 in design fees, $1,100,000 for inspections, $300,000 for permits, furniture, fixture, equipment and technology $3,517,141, $653,823 in design contingencies and $966,247 in owner's contingencies.

The phase 2 work now under way includes demolition of the historic 1930s gym and salvage of the stone that make the exterior walls.