Breaking ground on expansion

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By Amna Faheem, Staff Reporter  With a projected growth of 2,512 students attending Conestoga High School by the year 2024, an expansion of the present campus has been deliberated over for the past two years. ’Stoga has been planning breaking ground on construction for the past few months, and this past March, set about the...

By Amna Faheem, Staff Reporter

 With a projected growth of 2,512 students attending Conestoga High School by the year 2024, an expansion of the present campus has been deliberated over for the past two years. ’Stoga has been planning breaking ground on construction for the past few months, and this past March, set about the process.

Now, with COVID-19 affecting many aspects of the process and construction, such as obtaining required legal documents, receiving necessary materials and struggling to stay on schedule, the school is unable to proceed as originally planned. 

Dr. Patrick Boyle, the senior class’ vice principal and the faculty member in charge of overseeing the construction process, noted that lockdown did help with getting certain features of the expansion done. 

“It allowed us to have access to the building for construction companies ahead of time,” Boyle said. 

However, the lockdown also hindered the expansion. For example, obtaining permits was an arduous task.

Because of the lockdown, many official and government buildings were closed for a few weeks, making it difficult to obtain the documents needed to start construction. Many construction companies were also shut down, proving to be another obstacle in bringing in required resources and materials. 

“It also hurt us in certain aspects in the sense of getting some other things completed, whether it was access to getting permits completed because construction wasn’t allowed to happen until a certain point,” Boyle said. 

With hurricanes and wildfires affecting areas where materials needed for construction are sourced, such as Texas and California, there was some delay in securing the mandatory materials for the construction. 

“We had materials supposed to come from Texas, but you know Texas was hit pretty hard this summer with several hurricanes,” said Boyle. “We did have some supplies that we needed to come from California, and then California got hit with wildfires.”

Because of the many setbacks, Boyle stated that we are currently not on schedule. With numerous things being delayed or unavailable in the moment of need, it pushed the schedule back a few weeks. Many things inside the building itself, such as renovating the science labs and the FCS (Family Consumer Science) labs, are not completed.

As of Sept. 24, “we’re not on schedule right now,” Boyle said. “The perfect schedule would have been October 17th, but we are still waiting for certain things to happen in the building.” 

Although the construction inside the building is taking time, it seems it has not affected the construction in the new wing of the building. 

“Right now, they are working on the actual tunnel that goes under the building for the utilities,” Boyle said. “Once that’s completed, they will start installing the steel beams which hopefully they will get up by November.”  

Boyle stated they are still on target and plan to open in time for the 2021-2022 school year.

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