In a back room at Flathead High School on Tuesday, a small group of school administration and staff gathered for a first look at renderings of the school’s upcoming $18.2 million addition and remodel.
The exterior facade of the remodel aligns with the school’s current combination of red brick and towering windows. Steve L’Heureux, the principal architect at L’Heureux Page Werner, described boulevard trees along the building. Terracotta medallions currently high on the outside of the building are also featured in the new design.
“We’ll try to reuse as many of the medallions as we can to give a sense back to the historic piece that we’re missing,” L’Heureux told the group.
The June 13 meeting was the fifth for the committee of district administrators, high school staff, school board trustees, architects and engineers. For months, the committee has refined proposed layouts for the project, in which roughly 20,000 square feet will be demolished and replaced with approximately 54,000 square feet of new construction.
Demolition includes the small gym and half floors that are made up of nine classrooms and a lecture room.
Plans show an expansion of the school’s special education classroom, a new gym, and a connected loop throughout the school so students have a better path to their classes.
“It’s a big domino effect, so we really had to be careful making sure that we have enough space,” L’Heureux said.
L’Heureux said Flathead Assistant Principal Mike Lincoln is in charge of that task.
“I want to make sure there’s nothing or no one we’ve missed,” Lincoln said as they looked over the layout.
The new floor plan features flexible spaces, including a 20-by-37-foot room that can be divided into four classrooms with wall partitions. The large room will also convert into an art gallery for special events and the walls will feature student artwork throughout the year.
An additional $1.1 million is set aside for a parking expansion.
L’Heureux said there’s some chance for adjusting the plans as the engineers begin to move into the design and development phase. The next step is to create a 3-D model of the school, he said.
The Flathead project comes out of a $28.8 million high school district bond that impacts the H.E. Robinson Vocational Agriculture Center, Linderman Education Center, Legends Stadium and Glacier High School.
Construction on Flathead is estimated to be completed by July 2019.
Reporter Katheryn Houghton may be reached at 758-4436 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.