The Anoka-Hennepin School District is preparing for round two of its “Fit for the Future” construction projects districtwide.
Late last month, School Board members learned more about designs for the second phase of a slew of construction projects that began after voters in 2017 approved a nearly $250 million levy to support building projects.
“Everything’s going real well,” Chief Operations Officer Chuck Holden said. “We’re ahead of schedule by just a few weeks at the new elementary schools, and we’re almost exactly on schedule for the majority of the rest of the projects.”
The plan is to finish designs for second phase projects in time to go out to bid in the fall and begin construction in the spring of 2020.
Andover High School
A new gym is planned in addition to the new auditorium. It will include 10,000 square feet in the gym, which will have the ability to be divided into two multipurpose gym spaces.
Remodeling work will be done in the training room and the locker rooms as well.
Anoka High School
Preparations to remove existing portable classrooms are being made. The main entry, office area and classrooms will be finished by the start of school.
Blaine High School
Starting next spring Blaine High School will have a continuous construction similar to Anoka High School. In other words, the work will be done all a once, rather than in phases.
A gym will be added on the southwest corner, near where tennis courts and a parking lot are being added this summer.
Coon Rapids High School
The school will get a new 45-foot-high entrance, and phase two will extend that hallway through the back to the cafeteria and field house.
A new 5,000 square foot fitness center will be added, along with offices and a mechanical room. A 2,000 square foot music room will also be added and will include pull-out space for auditions and the like.
Anoka Middle School for the Arts, Fred Moore Campus
The building will get a different front entrance. The new addition will also include a cafeteria and office space.
The cafeteria will be moved out of the basement and placed near the front with floor-to-ceiling windows in a south-facing wall that will bring light into the former cafeteria space. That will be turned into classrooms with windows to let in the light from the new light well.
“That’s why there’s a little bit of an odd shape to some of those, but the intent is to capture as much of that sunlight as we can in that area,” Holden said.
Among the new additions is an outdoor learning area located near the center of the building. It will provide staff with opportunities to bring students outside.
The additions will allow a capacity of up to 1,500 more students to support the Fred More and Washington campuses. That growth is anticipated to come from Ramsey.
Anoka Middle School, Washington Campus
A new two story classroom addition and a new gym, with a curtain to split it in half, will both be added. Offices and the cafeteria will also be remodeled.
The classroom addition will replace a portable classroom and add further space for a growing student body.
Champlin-Brooklyn Park Academy
Approximately 24 classrooms will be added in a two-story addition that includes a new gym as well. The north side will have expanded access and parking, which should make the gym available to the public while preventing access to academic areas.
The new media center will include wood supports, giving it a unique look Holden said.
Officers currently housed on the west side of Jackson Middle School will be moved to a remodeled portion of this school.
River Trails Learning Center
A new addition on the east side of the building, toward the river, will include a flexible teaching area. Raising the roof between the old and new addition will bring in more sunlight.
A new trail will be added for students who need to “blow off steam” without disturbing classes by wandering the hallways. It will also include pull-out areas.