Construction on the new Kinder High School for the Performing and Visual Arts in downtown Houston is making steady progress, with work about 65 percent complete as of this quarter.
The $88 million campus, which is part of the Houston Independent School District’s 2012 Bond Program, is located between Caroline and Austin streets near the city’s renowned arts and theater district. It is scheduled to open in January 2019.
After raising the five-story building to its highest point in May, workers have since installed the roof and exterior waterproofing and plan to have the entire building enclosed in the coming weeks. Connection of permanent power will follow, which will enable the air conditioning, heating, and ventilation systems to be up and running by late November.
“Work on HSPVA is tracking on schedule, and I’m very pleased with the progress,” said Rice and Gardner Deputy Program Director Spencer Wingate, who oversees the project on behalf of HISD.
In the coming months, crews will work on interior finishing, including the installation of mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems, along with installation of walls and sheet rock. External work will include installation of masonry and metal panels.
The 168,000-square-foot building, designed by Gensler, will have its main entrance along Austin Street and include five stories of class and program space, plus two levels of underground parking. Wingate noted that the lowest parking level took on a small amount of water during Hurricane Harvey, but there were no significant damages nor was there a significant impact to the construction timeline.
Other features include a dramatic main entrance with double-high glass windows and a wide stairwell, an 800-seat main theater with a balcony, dance and music studios, a modern outdoor dining area on the first level, and an outdoor terrace located near the library on the top level.
Kinder HSPVA is among 40 schools, including 29 high schools, being rebuilt or renovated as part of HISD’s voter-approved bond program. Construction is currently underway on about two dozen campuses, and almost half of the schools in the program are now complete and open to students. Once all work is finished, the district will boast of one of the most modern portfolios of urban high schools in the country.
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