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Richland County moves forward on renovation project

Richland County schools are finalizing plans on renovations to the high school.

Posted: Nov. 1, 2018 5:40 PM

RICHLAND COUNTY, Ill. (WTHI) - Fall has arrived in the Wabash Valley. As the seasons change, so will the structure housing Richland County's high school students.

Superintendent Larry Bussard says, "This will be done in two phases. The first phase will be funded by the 1% sales tax. That again came out of the community engagement process."

The first phase costs 14 million dollars. Construction of new facilities is the first on the agenda.

Bussard explains, "We will be having a new auditorium. New music rooms. New auxiliary gym. Again out of the community engagement process we knew we needed more gym space."

The project will also move the aging cafeteria from the basement to the main floor.

Additionally, Richland County's renovations will have a focus on safety.

Bussard explains, "I think back in the early fifties the idea of buildings was how many entrances can you have into a building just for convenience. And the thing is school safety wasn't an issue back in the fifties and unfortunately today it is."

Renovations will cut the high school's entrances down to one secure entrance. Currently, the school has more than 30 possibly entryways.

Bussard says the school is still working on the final plans for renovations. He says they plan to keep students in the facility while it takes shape.

Bussard says, "Plans are coming together where we do not have to relocate our students. It'll be a little inconvenient at times. We'll have to be flexible. But everybody's focused on what it will look like when it's finished and it will definitely be worthy of our students of Richland County."

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