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As Schools Open for a New Year, Construction Is Common

When schools opened their doors for the 2016-2017 year, students of all ages returned to a common sight: construction.

From ongoing renovations to completely new structures, school construction is common and mobile storage containers can help in many instances.

Learning with Construction

A variety of reasons exist for the numerous projects currently ongoing.

In the Chicago suburb of West Aurora, several elementary, middle and high schools will be under construction throughout the year. According to The Chicago Tribune, building renovations and additions at some of the schools include:

  • Installing a modern heating and cooling system
  • Building an early childhood center
  • Constructing a new district office
  • Creating a new field house

All told, the price tag should be about $84.2 million. West Aurora voted for these projects in a 2015 referendum. In an interview with The Tribune, assistant superintendent of operations, Angie Smith, said construction at the elementary and middle schools is expected to be completed before winter break.

“I think everyone knows that this year is going to be a little tight, but it’s all going to be worth it in the end,” said Smith.

And up in Bridgewater, Nova Scotia, students also started the year hearing the sounds of loud equipment. At Park View Education Centre, which is currently the site of a $13 million project, construction was about 50 percent complete when students returned from their summer break. In an interview with Acadia Broadcasting 100.7 FM, the coordinator of operations, Andy Selig, said students will immediately notice the differences.

“Last year we had the entire west wing–upstairs and down– which represents almost 30,000 square feet, we had that out of commission and under construction,” said Selig. “So those students last year didn’t see that entire wing. They’re going to see that brand new.”

Kids in class
New school construction and renovations help alleviate overcrowding.

East Coast Issues

Over in Cedar Grove, New Jersey, construction at Cedar Grove High School hit a roadblock. According to Verona-Cedar Grove Times, a new auditorium and field renovations are not expected to be finished anytime soon. These specific projects were supposed to originally be completed by the end of October.

As it stands, the auditorium still needs to undergo electrical and HVAC work while the field has a ways to go

But not everything is bad news, as the renovation of the girls and boys locker rooms will be completed on time.

More Schools Needed

In other instances, students are returning to buildings that have completed renovations. In Frisco, Texas, four new campuses opened their doors for the first time. According to The Dallas Morning News, the Frisco Independent School District has a four-year plan that will see four new high schools open in that time frame.

Frisco ISD superintendent Jeremy Lyon said the district is following a small-school model. As such, enrollment at each high school is capped at 2,100 students. The Dallas Morning News called Frisco one of the fastest growing suburbs in Texas, and as a result, the school district adds anywhere from 2,500 to 3,500 students annually.

The rapid building of new structures helps protect against overcrowding. It’s not unheard of for valuable classrooms to be turned into storage rooms simply because there isn’t room.

Storage Needs

While schools are under construction, it’s common for storage needs to increase. Some classrooms may be off limits because they’ve been turned into temporary storage rooms while other parts of the building are under renovation.

Mobile Mini can help by providing mobile storage containers. No longer will desks, chairs and other supplies take up valuable space. Instead, these items and more can be placed in a mobile storage container so classrooms can be used for their original intent: learning.

Even newly built schools can benefit from mobile storage containers. For example, unused desks, athletic equipment and even old student files can be placed in these secure containers. This leaves valuable space for the things that matter, creating room for more supplies.