Milby High School students, parents, alumni, and staff gathered at the school’s historic campus on Broadway in Houston’s East End on Thursday to break ground on the school’s new 21st century campus.
“We’ve been planning this for a long time, and we’ve seen lots of demo,” said Milby HS Principal Roy de la Garza. “It’s really exciting to enter this phase of the project and to know that very soon we will start seeing the building go up.”
The event drew community leaders including HISD District 3 Trustee Manuel Rodriguez, State Representative Carol Alvarado, Houston City Councilmember Robert Gallegos and State Senator Sylvia Garcia. Attendees were also treated to student performances by the MHS Marching Band and Cheer and Dance teams.
“Today, like every day, is a great day to be a Milby Buff,” said Alvarado, who also is a Milby alum. “A lot of talent has come out of Milby High School. There is a rich history and a tradition of pride here. I can’t wait to come back for the dedication of this new school.”
Milby is among 40 HISD schools being renovated or rebuilt with funds from HISD’s $1.89 billion bond program. The redesigned campus, which will accommodate 1,800 to 2,000 students, is expected to take about two years to build.
“It’s great that we can keep the shell of the historical building, yet still provide a 21st century learning environment for the students,” said Milby Alumni President and Project Advisory Team member Owen Conerly. “I think all will enjoy the new building we’re going to have – it will be great for this community.”
Design plans include modern facilities for the school’s manufacturing and engineering programs with specialized learning spaces for science and engineering labs, welding, performing and visual arts, culinary arts with a student-run café and a print shop in the career technical education area to provide students with real job experience.
“The new school seems really pretty and open,” said Milby freshman Cynthia Rodriguez. “It will be good to have everyone back at the same location in a nice new building, and I think it will make more students want to go here.”