Soon, Springfield High School will undergo a renovation every bit as large as the $93
million one currently underway at Lanphier, Superintendent Jennifer Gill told Illinois Times
“We’re really at the 50% mark of the conceptual design,” she said. “We’ll be looking to finish those designs and go out for bid and start the project later this spring."
Already, Springfield Public Schools has purchased additional land near the SHS campus. But an exact price tag for the project has yet to be determined.
“We really don’t know exactly what number we’re going to land on,” Gill said. “But it’ll be around $93 million to $95 million, if not closer to $100 million dollars, in the end. But that will be phased in over several years of construction.”
The first stage of construction will include new gym space. “We have acquired most of the property on Monroe Street that is adjacent to the building so that we can utilize that space to build out and off the building,” Gill said.
“We’ll incorporate a new gymnasium that will be similar in scope to Lanphier’s new gym. We will also have what we call a second gym.” Gill said that space will also double as the storm shelter, which is a requirement for any newly constructed building or addition.
Two wings of the high school that once housed its shop classes, but now host weightlifting and the school’s wrestling program, will be demolished, she said.
“On the other side, the music section, we’ll be adding on to the building to provide extra classroom space,” Gill said. “Much like Lanphier, it’ll be remodeled and have more bright lights, new hallway space, new tiling, new ceilings. It’s all very important to Springfield High.”
She added that it is vital that each of the district’s high school campuses be treated equitably.
“For instance, Lanphier had no auditorium, so that was a big piece (of the project there). Southeast’s auditorium was 100% gutted and renovated this past summer.
And it’s fully operational now at Southeast High School, and it’s beautiful,” said Gill.
Southeast, which is the newest of the city’s public high schools, also had a full renovation of its restrooms and will soon have its football field and track stadium renovated, Gill said.
Gill said the district does not yet have a cost projection for the Southeast High School improvements.
“It’s still in the pre-planning phases, and we have not gone out for bond on that project yet,” she said.