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Local

Round two of Sterling High fieldhouse work to begin in March

Graduation schedule likely to change

The HVAC system at Sterling High School's Musgrove Fieldhouse will be replaced this summer as part of the second phase of the district's $1.9 million renovation project. New, larger restrooms also are part of the plan.
The HVAC system at Sterling High School's Musgrove Fieldhouse will be replaced this summer as part of the second phase of the district's $1.9 million renovation project. New, larger restrooms also are part of the plan.

STERLING – Round two of renovation work at Sterling High School’s Musgrove Fieldhouse is set to start, but the cost still is being negotiated.

The school board this week approved a $1.899 million base bid from Nicam Construction of Freeport for new restrooms for the fieldhouse lobby, installation of new HVAC systems in the gym, new ceiling and lighting for the lobby, and other minor aesthetic work to be done from March 23 to Aug. 14.

The money will come from the district’s health, life and safety funds, and the 1% county sales tax.

While Nicam’s bid was the lowest of six submitted, Superintendent Tad Everett wants to work with the company to drop some minor items and shave off about $200,000 to help meet its anticipated budget.

Asbestos abatement on metal duct putty in the gym and the drop ceiling above the lobby ceiling also must be done. That work will be put out for bid in February.

The quaint original men’s and women’s restrooms, from 1952, will be remodeled into one men’s restroom, while the athletic hall of fame room and nearby handicapped-accessible men’s and women’s restrooms will be remodeled into a women’s restroom.

The hall of fame, a project spearheaded by the high school’s Tech Zone class nearly 20 years ago, will become a single touchscreen display in the lobby. Amboy, Polo and Rock Falls high schools have similar setups.

Phase one of the project, which cost $1.685 million and also was paid for with HLS and 1% tax money, was completed just after the start of the school year. It included new bleachers, locker room remodeling and an expanded athletic training room.

The works means the graduation ceremony, set for May 26, might be relocated and/or rescheduled. The larger Challand Middle School Activity Center is being considered.

Board President Paul Sandefer and member Pam Capes addressed concerns during Wednesday’s board meeting about out-of-town travelers and work commitments for attendees if the dates were to change.

Everett encouraged residents to contact high school Principal Jason Austin at jaustin@sps5.org or 815-625-6800 to voice their opinion.

Next meeting

The Sterling school board next meets at 7 p.m. Feb. 26 at the Sterling High School Library, 1608 Fourth Ave.

An agenda will be posted on the district website, sterlingpublicschools.org, 48 hours prior to the meeting.

Call 815-626-5050 for more information.

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