SPUSD Construction Update | Two Major Projects Move Forward but May Face Delays

Construction continues on the South Pasadena High Athletics Project and a new black box theater at the local middle school, but the supply chain may be interrupted and slow their progress

PHOTO: Eric Fabbro | SouthPasadenan.com News | The black box theatre gym rehabilitation at SPMS, which has made visible improvements, was originally scheduled to be completed by mid-August

A pair of major projects in the South Pasadena Unified School District continue to move forward, however SPUSD Superintendent Geoff Yantz said on Thursday the supply chain may be interrupted and slow their progress.

“If that happens then the projects may be delayed,” Yantz said in an email.  “We will continue to update the public once we receive revised timelines for completion of these projects.”

PHOTO: Eric Fabbro | SouthPasadenan.com News | The Gym at SPHS in its current state. Progress is still being made, but may face certain obstacles in the near future

Using funds from a $98 million bond measure approved by local voters, the newest construction effort at the high school will provide a new look to the west side of a campus that originally opened 113 years old. To the east on Fair Oaks Avenue, a new black box theatre will be part of the landscape at the nearby middle school.

PHOTO: Eric Fabbro | SouthPasadenan.com News | Construction workers are still keeping pace with the old gym rehabilitation at SPMS

Work on the SPHS athletic facilities project calls for improvements to the school’s two gymnasiums, and a redesign of the area on Diamond Avenue from the stadium south to the pool and baseball field. New outdoor basketball courts, tennis courts, visitor bleachers, a new field house, featuring a training, film room and storage, are also in the plans.

The two gyms, explained Yantz, will be a key focus, the superintendent explaining most of the work will be done on the older, or what he calls the “main gym,” where he entire floor and bleachers will be replaced, new baskets and backboards installed, the lobby renovated, restrooms and outside ticket booth replaced. In addition, the locker rooms will be gutted, restored, and new team rooms will be built.

The school’s athletic facilities will be updated, “creating a higher quality and safer environment for student-athletes and a more welcoming and enjoyable space for parents and community,” wrote Yantz in a letter to parents in the district.

PHOTO: Eric Fabbro | SouthPasadenan.com News | Construction on the former outdoor basketball court section in progress at SPHS

Enhancing the arts is on full display as work continues on a rehabilitation project at South Pasadena Middle School.

Efforts are to turn the old gym on campus into a black box theater, repurposing a building with a long history and effectively maintaining its historical value.

Along with the black box theatre – a darkened performance space with audience interaction that varies in size in a square room – the finished product will also feature flex labs featuring multiple functions and an arts room.

PHOTO: Eric Fabbro | SouthPasadenan.com News | The northern facade of the SPMS gymnasium

The theatre portion will provide flexible seating for audience members, allowing for a variety of different configurations.  Performances might be held as theatre-in-the-round or in a traditional seating arrangement. Space will be used for everything from lectures to dance performance where only basic technical arrangements are required.

Expected completion for the two projects was by mid-August before coronavirus concerns were put on the superintendent’s already full plate.

“We will continue to update the public once we receive revised timelines for completion of these projects,” said Yantz.

PHOTO: Eric Fabbro | SouthPasadenan.com News | A construction worker giving a new paint job to the eastern facade of the SPHS gymnasium

 

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