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Breaking ground for the new HHS

SPRING VALLEY – Hall Township High School officials, area dignitaries, community residents and guests braved Wednesday’s rainy weather for a groundbreaking ceremony for Hall’s new multi-million dollar high school building.

Around 35 people attended Wednesday’s ceremony, including State Rep. Frank Mautino. Following the groundbreaking ceremony, Mautino commented on the importance of the day and getting a new school in Spring Valley.

“This is a beautiful day in the Valley. This high school has stood since 1913, and the committee, the people of Ladd, Spring Valley, Cherry, Seatonville, surrounding feeder schools have passed a referendum which is going to provide for a much brighter future for generations and children,” Mautino said. “This (current) building has served us since the early 1900s, and the new facility will take care of generations to come.”

Mautino, Leopardo Construction Co. President Rick Mattioda, Spring Valley Mayor Walt Marini and Hall High School Superintendent Mike Struna were all scheduled to speak at the groundbreaking ceremony, but Struna was the sole speaker since the event was shortened because of the rain.

On Thursday, Struna commented on the construction project and what the new high school building will mean for the community.

As far as the actual construction work, Struna said the first bid package for mass excavation will be opened Nov. 13 and approved by the Hall High School Board on Nov. 20. Excavation should begin in late November. Subsequent bid packages will be approved in coming weeks for various aspects of the work, he said.

Bid Package 2 is due Dec. 16 for the concrete, structural steel, precast walls and mechanical systems. Bid Package 3 is due Feb. 24 for the building shell construction (masonry) and interior work. Bid Package 4 will be due April 7, 2014, for the abatement of asbestos of the current school building, the demolition of the current building, site improvements and site utilities.

Hopefully, the new school building will be ready and the current school demolished and removed in time for school to open in early September 2015, Struna said.

“The board is looking forward to the second 100 years of Hall Township High School with the new school at the heart of a new curriculum that has a goal of college and career preparation for all students,” Struna said. “We believe that the new school building is our opportunity to get back to the original values of Hall Township High and Vocational School.”

As reported earlier in the Bureau County Republican, the new $28 million, 133,000-square-foot school will be three stories tall and will include an academic building, athletic complex and performing arts center.

BCR correspondent Becky Kramer contributed to this story.

Comment on this story at www.bcrnews.com.

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