ANACORTES — A new 5,000-square-foot building on the Anacortes Middle School campus will allow for an easier transition during the construction of the new Anacortes High School building and facilitate a space for the school district’s technology department.
The Anacortes School Board approved construction of the building, which will cost about $1.2 million, at a meeting Feb. 27. The Anacortes City Council approved a conditional-use permit for it Monday.
The district received three bids on the project, with a low bid by Quantum Construction of $1.2 million. Funds will come from three sources: relocation dollars from the high school bond, the technology levy and the district’s general fund.
“This building will meet our needs now and in the future,” District Superintendent Mark Wenzel said.
Construction will start this spring and should be done by August, to be ready for the 2018-19 school year, he said.
The building is part of a relocation plan by the district.
During the next school year, some areas of the high school building will be under construction, including the vocational, performing arts, athletic and music programs. Those programs needed to be relocated for the year, Wenzel said.
Removing those students from the high school building means the construction project can move quicker and about $730,000 will be saved. About $600,000 of the high school bond was set aside for relocation costs.
While most programs and classes found another home for the year, a few haven’t yet. Without a viable facility, the district looked at building its own, Wenzel said.
A new building will house metals classes and some classes dealing with robotics and computer-aided drafting. About 200 students will take classes in the building next year.
“I’m really pleased that the district was able to find a solution to house our high school programs next year,” Anacortes High School teacher and Career & Technical Education Director Joe Furin said in a news release. “These are highly valued hands-on learning programs for our students, and this facility will ensure that our educational program continues uninterrupted.”
After the 2018-19 year is complete, those classes will move into the new and renovated high school space and the new building on the middle school property will be transitioned to a different use.
The school’s technology department will move in, Wenzel said. Right now, the department is housed in a portable classroom at an elementary school.