Students entering the building two weeks ago may have noticed the signature entryway being ripped off the old front entrance of Mt. Greylock. This is just one of the many steps in creating a brand new building, set to open completely in the fall of 2018. Phase One of the four Phase plan began earlier this summer, with abatement of the front part of the building that is being kept: the auditorium, the band room, and the corridor to the gym. Because that part of the building is closed off, teachers and students are adjusting to the new room assignments such as art and stained glass being held in the back science hallway. Phase One has now progressed to include demolition, and as a result students walking to gym can now look out the Cold Corridor windows and see nothing but dirt and a few construction workers where the entire front of the building used to be.
Despite the fact that construction is happening less than 500 feet away from some classrooms, there have not been any major problems with noise or distractions so far. “This phasing process has not interrupted academics at all,” says Principal Mary MacDonald. “You may think, we’ve got 117 acres, why build on top of ourselves? But the best and cheapest design included the auditorium and the gym and we wanted to save our playing fields,” added Building Project and Facilities Supervisor Jesse Wirtes.
The specifics of the building’s final plan are changing as the plan develops. Says MacDonald, “We don’t have a big presentation that shows what it’s going to look like because it’s still developing. I have new information almost every two weeks.” Students can look forward to being able to vote on the specific color of red used in the stairways and, adds Macdonald, “I’m getting closer to being able to put up a big board that shows the types of wood we’re going to use and the paint colors and how the chairs will be upholstered.” Until then, students can content themselves with a look at the current building project bulletin board across from the vending machine just before the main office.