School officials and project managers detailed a complex game of musical chairs that will begin at Naugatuck High School on April 1 designed to keep the school functioning during a two-year, $70 million renovation.
About 20 residents attended the session Thursday in the school resource center to learn how the project will remove asbestos, tear the “skin” of the building and add a new floor over the natatorium with minimal disruption to education.
Initially, students and teachers will see fences go up around the campus to create staging areas for storage containers and building materials, according to Roger Johnson, project superintendent with O&G Industries of Torrington.
The heavy work will start when spring break begins and workers will rush to remove asbestos from the section of the building on either side of the pool before school resumes.
“We’ll only be doing asbestos when school is not in session,” said Lorel H. Purcell, preconstruction manager with O&G.
The plan calls for the addition of a second story on that end of the building which will include a weight room and a dance studio. That addition should be largely complete by early 2013.
Over the course of the project there additional swing spaces will be brought into play. Before the first pas de deux in the dance studio, it will be put to use as a rehearsal room for the band, which will be displaced during renovations to the auditorium beginning in the summer of 2014.
But with all this activity going on around them, students and faculty won’t see much but a new wall where the entrance to the natatorium used to be.
Over the summer, work will begin on Goodyear House, and O&G along with architects Kaestle Boos Associates of New Britain decided to nearly build a school within a school.
Purcell said there will be 18 temporary classrooms constructed in the media center and the technology wing to house students while their regular classrooms are renovated.
The plan calls for students from each wing to spend one semester in temporary quarters before returning to the refurbished classrooms, according to Principal Jan Saam.
Construction is a noisy business and the contracts with the 19 different trades involved in the project all have strict provisions on noise, with a special ear toward critical dates such as the CAPT tests, final exams and other exams.
“They are not allowed to be disruptive when school is in session,” said Johnson of O&G.
To minimize noise from the construction site, the temporary walls that will block student access to work areas also will be insulated, Johnson said.