Franklin — While the students are on spring break, construction at Franklin High School will be in full force.
"With the students gone for break, we need to do as much as we can so as not to interrupt classes," said Steve Benitez, CG Schmidt construction superintendent.
The high school has been under construction since the summer of 2013 to complete two referendum-approved facilities: an academic addition and a Performing Arts Center auditorium.
"Despite a difficult winter, we are still on schedule," Benitez said. "Some of our milestones have been getting the buildings enclosed, all the cement has been poured, the walls are put up in place and we're beginning to put up the masonry walls for the auditorium."
Beginning March 17, the school's front entrance and staff offices were closed for the rest of the school year to accomodate construction. Students and faculty must now use the northern entrance near the gym, often referred to as the "Recreation Department Entrance," Franklin Superintendent Steve Patz said.
"It's a little bit of an inconvenience, but it's something that needs to be done ... to finish the construction," Patz said. "Overall, things are going very well."
The new classrooms and the auditorium are scheduled to be completed in August, before the next school year.
Construction will continue throughout 2014 to remodel the old areas of the school building and should be completed in January, 2015, Benitez said.
The remaining construction in the 2014-15 school year will be "minimal compared to what we're doing now and over the summer," he said.
Once completed, the $34 million project will include new classrooms, updated corridors, an expanded parking lot and a 850-seat auditorium with dressing rooms and an orchestra pit.
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