Alcoa High School’s construction ramps up
By Matthew Stewart | (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Workers are making progress on the new Alcoa High School, and foundation work is expected to start within several weeks.
“A lot of construction is going on right now,” said Barry Brooke, executive vice president of commercial development for property development and management firm Lawler-Wood. The company is serving as Alcoa City Schools’ project representative.
Crews are making progress on required site work, he said. They encountered a large amount of rock at a location near the baseball and softball fields, which the project team dubbed “the Hump.”
Crew members recently completed five rounds of blasting, Brooke said. “I’m glad to report that ‘the Hump’ is no more.”
Workers have a portion of the building pad to grading specifications, and the remainder will be at grade within the next week, he said. They should start foundation and underground utility work in the building pad around the month’s end or early September.
The project team should have its trailer in place in the near future, Brooke said. They will have brick selection panels in place by mid- to late-September.
Team members have also performed required testing for a 2.5-acre tract that was ALCOA’s stormwater management area, he said. They expect to receive results in early September.
After receiving the results, officials will have to evaluate final steps with ALCOA to obtain control of the site. Construction can proceed unimpeded without this property until April 1, 2014.
The new Alcoa High School is tracking on schedule for its May 31, 2015, completion date, Brooke said. “We’re in really good shape. We’d like to keep it up.”
Alcoa City Commission previously authorized a land purchase agreement that will pay $235,000 for 53 acres of ALCOA property for the new Alcoa High School. The separate contracts concern 25 acres southwest of the current high school’s location and 28 acres in the Lake Louise area, a former waste disposal site.
City officials, ALCOA and Chattanooga-based developers Kinsey Probasco Hays held lengthy negotiations regarding the school site’s acquisition. Kinsey Probasco Hays owns the former ALCOA West Plant site, a 375-acre property bounded by Hall Road, Alcoa Highway, Hunt Road, Mills Street, and Faraday Street.
Officials previously outlined three development phases for the new Alcoa High School, which will open in July 2015. The project’s first phase was the school, parking lots and roadwork, and the second phase was an auxiliary gym that was recently added to the project’s scope of work. The third phase will be football stadium renovations.
In 2015-16, Alcoa City Schools will start operating four schools. The district will:
• Open Alcoa Primary School, which will serve pre-K-2, in the current Alcoa Elementary School;
• Open Alcoa Intermediate School, which will serve grades 3-5, in the current Alcoa Middle School;
• Open Alcoa Middle School, which will serve grades 6-8, in the current Alcoa High School.