Ar­chi­tects share ini­tial renderings of new Newton High School

The Covington News - - Front page - By Am­ber Pittman

Newton County Board of Ed­u­ca­tion mem­bers got a look at what the new Newton High may look like when sys­tem ar­chi­tects on Tues­day un­veiled ini­tial renderings.

The board voted ear­lier in the year to phase out Newton High and sev­eral other schools in their five-year fa­cil­i­ties plan. On Tues­day, Cunningham Fore- hand Matthews & Moore Ar­chi­tects Inc. pre­sented sev­eral views of what the new school could look like and ex­plained where class­rooms would be.

It’s no co­in­ci­dence that the renderings re­sem­ble the county’s new­est high school, Al­covy, ac­cord­ing to Ray Moore, ar­chi­tect for the school sys­tem. Af­ter speak­ing with of­fi­cials from each high school as well as ad­min­is­tra­tors from the school sys­tem, archi- tects were able to learn what ev­ery­one liked and dis­liked about their schools and plan ac­cord­ingly. The con­sen­sus was that the new school should be sim­i­lar to Al­covy, with some mi­nor ad­just­ments.

One dif­fer­ence is that the two-story Newton High build­ing will be con­structed with pre-cast con­crete in­stead of steel, as was used in Al­covy.

Newton will hold 2,500 stu­dents. Its main en­trance will have a cov­ered walk­way and open into a com­mon area that is slighter wider than the one at Al­covy.

To the left of the com­mon would be a me­dia cen­ter and ninth grade class­rooms, with spe­cial ed­u­ca­tion and sci­ence labs on the up­per level. To the right would be the of­fice, cafe­te­ria and au­di­to­rium and be­hind that would be the ROTC room,

band room, choral room, art room, other vo­ca­tional labs and a gym­na­sium.

The ren­der­ing shows a gym with re­tractable seat­ing, much like that at Al­covy. There will also be locker rooms on ei­ther side of the gym.

The school will be built with cap­i­tal out­lay money, ac­cord­ing to Deputy Su­per­in­ten­dent for Op­er­a­tions Dr. Den­nis Car­pen­ter. Any lo­cal fund­ing would come from Spe­cial Pur­pose Lo­cal Op­tion Sales Tax (SPLOST). SPLOST money can only be used to build new schools and can­not be moved to other funds to pay for things such as teacher salary or school op­er­a­tion.

Contractors will need to be­gin work on the new build­ing in spring 2011 for it to open as planned in 2013. The school sys- tem does not have a site for the new school and the bid for con­struc­tion has not been put out.

Ren­der­ing cour­tesy of Cunningham Fore­hand Matthews & Moore Ar­chi­tects Inc.

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