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Plans for new Hughesville High School gym underway

By Staff | Aug 3, 2010

An outside wall is being torn down to allow for more seating in the high school gym at Hughesville High School. Completion date is expected for mid-October.

HUGHESVILLE – October 15 is the expected end date to complete the new Hughesville High School gymnasium that is under construction this summer according to East Lycoming School district’s Business Manager, David Maciejweski.

The project began its planning in the fall of 2009 and it is included as part of a state grant with the Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority.

The students will be using the outdoor fields and courts when school resumes on Monday, August 30. “During inclement weather they have the indoor pool and fitness facility to use,” said Maciejewski. “It won’t affect things that greatly for one month,” he added. Curriculum usually focuses on tennis and track in the beginning of the school year.

The expansion was necessary to increase the court seating capacity by about 200. For event seating such as wrestling matches, seating capacity will increase from 931 to 1,017. This will also include new visitor side seating. The old bleachers will be relocated to the Ashkar gym to replace the existing wooden bleachers which are no longer ADA compliant and lack aisles for easy access.

“This will improve the safety for our sports teams and officials,” Maciejewski said. “We will also be increasing the perimeter of the courts to five feet,” he added. Previously, the court floor would lose seats when the bleachers would need to be pulled out for basketball games to accommodate more people. Often there was standing room only for the basketball games. “It is good to provide this availaability. Now grandparents will be able to come and enjoy the games,” he explained. Total court seating will go from 641 to 832. The outside wall will be moved back 18 feet to gain more seating. Attendance for the games has definitely increased in the past two to three years according to Maciejewski.

The existing gym divider curtain will also be removed and replaced with a newer electronic one. Lighting will also be modified to avoid dark spots.

This is all part of the biomass project that is planned with the McClure Company, the main contractor. The school district chose them because of their relationship on energy performed projects. The biomass addition and the gym expansion project totals $2,960,768 and was presented in December of 2009 when the district received a PEDA grant for a biomass boiler.