Legacy 2020: No Break in Summer, Fall Renovations at QHS
July 16, 2018
Mounds of stone and roughed-up roads give just a hint of the extensive construction now underway in the Legacy 2020 capital project at Queensbury High School. The school building itself, as well as much of the parking lots around it, will remain closed to the public throughout the summer as work ramps up while students are away.
“We worked with the general contractors pretty closely to develop a schedule that was good for us and worked for them as well. We beat the deadlines that they wanted to start by so they could start a little earlier,” said Director of Facilities and Operations Rob Chapman, who is overseeing the capital project.
Exterior Work to Improve Safety, Traffic Patterns
During summer 2018, contractors are grinding up old blacktop and reworking the layout of parking lots around the high school. This work will improve student safety and traffic flow, according to Superintendent of Schools Dr. Douglas W. Huntley.
“The current traffic pattern mixes students, parents, visitors, faculty and buses at the same location. By separating student traffic from others, we are creating a much safer environment for everyone,” he said.
At the front of the school building, the left and right side of the parking lot traditionally used by students will be divided by a new, central plaza in order to separate student parking (left side of graphic in teal) from parent and visitor traffic (right side of graphic in blue). The left-side lot will reopen to the public at the start of the school year, but the right-side lot will remain closed to the public through February while contractors use it as a staging and access point for interior construction.
A renovated road running between the east side of the school and nearby tennis courts will open to one-way traffic at the start of the school year, but with the installation of a town traffic light on Aviation Road in late fall, it will expand to a two-way traffic route. Once complete with a light, this new pattern will improve traffic flow during school arrival and dismissal times.
Additional road work is visible at the back of the school campus. Contractors are working to improve a confusing, high volume five-way intersection near the road to the Transportation Department building, the entrance to the bus loop and faculty parking lot of Queensbury Elementary School, and the bus exit and parking lot entrance of William H. Barton Intermediate School.
“The changes will improve safety at the intersection by providing a clearer, more defined traffic pattern,” said Huntley.
The work also will improve drainage of storm runoff that in the past has backed up and flooded the road.
Construction Picks Up in Summer
As busy as it is outside the high school, there is even more action on the inside.
By the end of summer vacation, Chapman expects to open the renovated fine and performing arts wing; new labs in the science, technology, engineering and math wing (pictured at right; and several renovated spaces in the new humanities wing.
By December, he expects to open the new physical education space at the back of the building and a renovated locker room for PE students that will replace the old large group instruction room.
“We had a lot of the furniture and classroom materials packed up and moved out before graduation. We need to get a lot of flooring and different kinds of materials out of the way, so we can do this without any interruptions,” he said.
HS a Hub of Activity in the Fall
In the fall, a major portion of the Legacy 2020 construction will kick off at the front and center of the high school building (highlighted in red on diagram below). This work includes the creation of a new centralized support services area, library/media center and Queensbury community room along the front of the building, and a secure vestibule at the main entrance to the high school.
This work is expected to continue at least through February 2019.
“We’re taking some of the roof off and putting new steel in the building. Really the hardest, most difficult and complicated portion of the project is right in the center of the building,” said Chapman.
While renovations continue at the current main entrance, a temporary entrance near the old library/media center will serve as the main gateway for high school visitors. This temporary entrance will include safety features such as a double-set of locked doors, a buzzer for admittance and a Badge Pass system for scanning IDs.
Queensbury families and staff will receive more information about changes to traffic patterns and high school building access at the start of the new school year.
Visit www.queensburyschool.org/2020 for updates on Legacy 2020.