There is one silver lining to Covid …. Alta’s construction will be completed one year ahead of schedule.
In the fall of 2021 all of the construction will be finished. The old main office and auditorium are now in a heavy remodel phase and should be ready by the opening of school in August. New performing arts classrooms, band and orchestra, choir, and theater rooms are undergoing finishing touches and will be housed in the old auditorium area as well.
The performing arts classrooms are more spacious and have skylights to provide natural lighting. The rooms also have higher ceilings that are slanted in order to have the music bounce off and direct it to the audience.
For band leader Caleb Shabestari, the new room will have good accoustics. “I am most excited for the 40 foot ceilings,” he said. “The ceiling in our old room was only 10 feet tall.”
Choir teacher April Iund is excited to be back in a regular classroom where students can hear one another “making music.” Iund said it’s been difficult this year making the lobby of the Performing Arts Center work. Covid restrictions also require students sit far apart from each other. “I am excited to have a real home, a place that’s just for the choir,” she said.
“The higher, slanted ceiling redirects the music towards the audience, making it sound better,” Assistant Principal Garry True said. “Students will enjoy these rooms and programs that are a major part of Alta for years to come.”
The old main office area is also undergoing a major remodel. The space will house Alta’s Career Center, a big conference room for student government and other faculty and staff meetings, and two classrooms.
Other improvements include a new sewer line to the school and a new gym floor. The original gym floor was made of rubber and glued directly to the concrete when the school was built in the late 1970’s. According to Mr. True, the existing wood floor was laid down several years later because students experienced too many injuries playing on the rubber surface. Now, both flooring surfaces need to be removed and a new floor level with the hallways will be installed making the entranced ADA approved. The rubber floor and the existing wood floor are not ADA compliant and level with the hallway. “There’s a noticeable lip at the entrances of the gyms,” True said. “Removal of the floor will be a big improvement.”
The gym will also get a new sound system making that aspect of sporting events better.
For now, students, faculty, and staff will be patient and live with the construction noise and dust. The end results will be worth it.