TRENTON – A dedication ceremony and open house to mark completion of the new $28 million Wesclin High School will take place Sunday, Aug. 17.
Doors will open at 1 p.m. for tours, with a dedication ceremony following at 2 p.m., school officials said. Around 3:30 or 4 p.m., a general open house for high school students will begin.
The project, which is being financed by state grant money and local taxes, was authorized by District 3 voters in November 2010.
Swansea-based Holland Construction Services oversaw construction of the facility. FGM Architects designed the structure.
“Everyone has been a pleasure to work with,” Superintendent Jennifer Filyaw said. She joined District 3 in July 2013 and has been present for nearly all the construction.
The new school is on Wesclin Road, a short distance behind the former junior/senior high school, which faces Illinois Route 160.
With the shift to the new high school, the former junior high will become Wesclin Middle School and will house children from fourth through eighth grades. The youngest children are being moved from facilities that had been rented elsewhere in the community, Filyaw said.
An additional $150,000 was spent on renovations to the middle school facility.
The original high school plan was conceived with a $23.3 million price tag that grew as furniture and other site work and land costs were added in, she said.
The new, 110,000-square-foot school will accommodate ninth through 12th graders from Trenton and New Baden and allow for future growth.
“We’ll start with 400 students but we’ll be able to go up to 600,” she said.
Earthwork began in September 2012 and the foundation work and construction began in April 2013.
The one-story building’s exterior is made of painted concrete “tilt-up” panels, brick inlay and structural steel components. The locker room, industrial arts and agriculture departments were built with concrete masonry units. Many windows have been installed throughout the school to give an open, airy feel and also for energy efficiency.
The center of the new school features a three-level “cafetorium” for theater productions and school presentations.
A competitive gymnasium will hold approximately 2,100 people.
“There are three, full-size basketball courts, which will allow for multiple games during tournaments,” Filyaw said.
Several different wings will be devoted to departments such as band and music, agriculture, wood shop and industrial arts, family and consumer science and art. The general classroom wing will consist of 14 classrooms, three science labs and a media center. Another wing will house the high school faculty offices and the Wesclin School District offices.
The existing track and football stadium are being upgraded as part of the changes.
FGM Architects also designed several outdoor gathering areas for the students.