by Scott Neuffer

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July 5, 2012
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Remodeled GES to be ready for first day of school

Demolition of Gardnerville Elementary School's old multipurpose room has been completed, according to Core Construction Superintendent Rich Davison.

As the walls of the old structure fell last month, passersby got a clean view of the new multipurpose room, front office and classroom wing erected to the north against the school's soccer field.

Entire construction costs have been estimated at $6.1 million, although the final tally won't be known until construction is finished.

Standing proud with a white-and-blue face and a red metal roof, the new, interconnected building totals 17,510 square feet, Davison said. "Home of the Cougars" has been lettered across the front of the multipurpose room, and a new entrance and parking lot will reroute traffic to the southwest exit, alleviating congestion along Toler Lane.

"We will be turning everything over, with the exception of the 100 wing, before the start of school," Davison said.

This year, both secondary and elementary schools open their doors on Aug. 20.

Davison said he expects renovation of the existing 100 hall to be finished by October. Improvements include new mechanical equipment inside the classrooms, new communication lines, carpet, paint and finishing. A new roof on the 100 wing will be completed before school starts as well, Davison said.

"Overall, construction has gone very well," he said. "It's been great working with Douglas County. They've been very helpful getting through everything."

Still undecided is the fate of the Heritage Building. Built in 1917, the brick structure is the Valley's oldest school. Superintendent Lisa Noonan said students will use the building this fall while renovation wraps up.

Core Construction has worked on separating the Heritage Building from the rest of the campus, including the installation of a new electrical system.

"We want to make sure it's available to serve kids if need be, but once everything is completely finished, we'll be out of that building," Noonan said. "Like Kingsbury Middle School, the board will be shown options and consider if they want to sell or lease it. I don't know why we'd let it sit there and be empty. We have a clear deed, free and clear, and it's a beautiful brick building. I wouldn't be surprised if a sister agency uses it."

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The Record Courier Updated Jul 8, 2012 01:23PM Published Jul 5, 2012 04:11PM Copyright 2012 The Record Courier. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.