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Construction crews have completed two-thirds of the renovation work slated for Kashmere High School, and the final third is expected to be complete by the end of the summer.
Integral parts are coming together quickly. Both the auditorium entrance and drywall are finished, the roofing is in progress, the new HVAC system is being installed, and the pouring of the driveway is almost complete.
“Our students and staff continue to work and learn as construction moves forward,” Kashmere Principal Nancy Blackwell said excitedly. “The changes are amazing.”
Kashmere is being renovated as part of the voter-approved 2012 Bond Program. In conjunction with an upgraded front entrance, the $17 million renovation calls for the enclosure of a central courtyard to create a large, indoor flexible space with skylights and windows to provide natural light for year-round use.
Other new features include expanding the JROTC area, relocating and renovating the dance studio, adding new bleachers to the gym, expanding the weight room, upgrading the school’s snack bar, and opening up the auditorium and gymnasium visually to allow for better supervision.
Earlier last month, the first floor of the school flooded when a main drain collapsed. Despite the setback, the construction crew and others were able to clean up the damage within 72 hours and remain on schedule.
The project’s completion is slated for the beginning of August 2017.
Kashmere is among 40 schools, including 29 high schools, being renovated or rebuilt as part of HISD’s 2012 Bond Project. Construction is underway at roughly three dozen campuses, which is more activity than any other time in district history.
Almost 50 percent of bond projects will be complete and open to students by the end of this summer. Once all work is complete, HISD will boast of one of the most modern portfolios of urban high schools in the country.