District Continues Construction Work Over the Summer
When school starts on Wednesday, Sept. 4, students, parents, and staff will see the progress of the extensive construction that has occurred all over the District this summer. The improvements are part of the Brighton Facilities Improvement Project, which was approved by voters in May of 2017.
Some of the projects are complete, while others will continue throughout the 2019-20 school year and beyond. In fact, there will be work continuing through September of 2021.
“We are incredibly grateful to the community for their support and patience,” Superintendent Dr. Kevin McGowan said. “The modernization of our facilities will help expand and improve the learning environment for our current students and those to come. Our classroom spaces and learning opportunities will match the excellence in the service being provided by our staff members each day. Our staff have been exceptionally thorough and thoughtful in the planning of this project and its execution. This has resulted in an efficient, safe, and focused project that will yield incredible results. Thanks for bearing with us as we manage the disruptions that can be caused by this type of undertaking. It will be well worth it!”
The most noticeable work can be found at Council Rock Primary School. The new addition to the south is coming along nicely with steel erected and exterior masonry walls built. The addition will house new classrooms, allowing full-day kindergarten to be offered in the fall of 2021. The cafeteria, kitchen, and main office were demolished and the auditorium was leveled. Throughout the 2019-20 school year, the auditorium will house the temporary kitchen and cafeteria. Ultimately, it will become the new main office, library media center, and instructional space. The main office and nurse’s office have been relocated to the west wing and will remain there for the year. The building will also receive a renovated entrance, cafetorium, and kitchen. Interior renovations are occurring throughout the building, along with mechanical, electrical, and plumbing upgrades. The bus loop and parking lot are also being reconfigured during the construction as the new cafetorium is built. Work will continue throughout the next two school years.
“All of the relocation and construction will take a great deal of patience,” Council Rock Principal Matt Tappon said. “However, in the end, we will have a wonderful new building with room for all the great programming we have at CRPS, including full-day kindergarten.”
Brighton High School’s construction is highlighted by the auditorium renovation. Construction crews have removed the auditorium’s walls, ceilings, and seats and abated existing asbestos. The auditorium will receive a new ceiling and lighting. The performing arts lobby and corridor is being renovated and receiving new lighting. Ten student restrooms and the visual and performing arts dressing room were demolished and renovated. The restroom renovations required plumbing renovations and significant asbestos abatement. Additionally, three art classrooms and a locker room are being renovated, while the faculty break room and two conference rooms are being upgraded. Corridors and vestibules throughout the high school are getting tile replacement, lighting upgrades, and door hardware replacement. Other work includes: HVAC upgrades to the lower gym, electrical upgrades to the boiler room, upgrades to the data closets, roof work to accommodate new HVAC equipment next summer, and new flooring and hardware in the band room.
“We are all excited to have several newly renovated student bathrooms for the 2019-20 school year,” BHS Principal Dr. Tom Hall said. “Most exciting, however, is the progress being made on the complete demolition and remodeling of our auditorium — opening in January 2020! It is going to be a showstopper for sure!”
Twelve Corners Middle School had its cafeteria and kitchen area demolished and renovated and will feature new serving lines. The kitchen is receiving a new walk-in freezer and cooler. Six student restrooms and locker rooms were demolished and renovated. The fitness center and adaptive physical education room are being reconfigured and upgraded and a traditional classroom is being converted into a science classroom. Accessibility improvements were made, including the addition of a ramp from the lobby to the cafeteria and a new lift in the auditorium. Lighting upgrades were made in several corridors along with handrail replacement in two stairwells. The building also received plumbing and electrical upgrades to the maintenance room and generator room.
“We are most excited about our cafeteria and kitchen renovations to create a much nicer environment for students and a more efficient serving area,” TCMS Principal Rob Thomas said. “We are also glad to have renovated bathrooms and a ramp for students to use, creating much more convenient access for all. We also are thrilled to bring a science room up to standard and have a renovated fitness center.”
French Road Elementary School had part of its roof replaced along with some data cabling improvements on the inside. More significant projects are planned for FRES in future years, including upgrades to art and music classrooms, the library media center, bathrooms, cafetorium, and gymnasium.
Board of Education member Larry Davis is on the District’s construction team. He’s been able to bring his knowledge and experience as Paychex’s Director of Facilities and Real Estate to meetings.
“I am not sure if everyone in the Brighton community realizes the size and scale of this overall project. This is a 3 to 4 year initiative covering five buildings, with a significant workload concentrated in July and August for the next three years,” Davis said. “The amount of pre-planning that was required is astonishing, and we should be particularly proud of how the District facilities team have applied themselves to this project. Many of their suggestions have helped us stay on schedule, on budget, and avoid future problems. It is also important to remember that anytime there is construction in a structure more than 50 years old, there is the potential for hazards, and, if they are found, they must be handled correctly to maintain the safety of the kids, the staff, and the community. We remain extraordinarily proud of the work that is being undertaken, and I am sure that the community will share that pride when this is completed.”
The Brighton Facilities Improvement Project will have more projects occurring in future years to improve all of the District’s facilities.
"The Board is excited and enthused about all that has been accomplished thus far, and the pace of our work,” Board of Education President Mark Kokanovich said. “While the overall Brighton Facilities Improvement Project is highlighted by the renovation and expansion of Council Rock Primary School and implementation of full-day kindergarten in 2021, the total District-wide scope of the project encompasses all buildings and facilities. When our current phase is completed over the next few years, we will see multiple capital improvements and additions, technology upgrades, and modernization across the District. We will also be positioned to continue to modernize and upgrade all facilities and structures over the next 10 to 15 years as we continue to invest in our school community for the long-term.”