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FLOOR PLANS: A Lifer's Thoughts on the Construction

April 19, 2017

 

Introduced to Renovation

When we were told about the plan to renovate, I was shocked to say the least. Despite the opening between the middle school and upper school that prevented our campus from being completely enclosed, and the few times throughout middle school where I sat on the floor to eat lunch in the overcrowded cafeteria, I didn't think our school had much need for improvement. Then, when we were introduced to the sketches our new library would be based on, I immediately started grieving the floor-to-ceiling, wooden bookshelves that housed our population of novels, comic books, and encyclopedias. Growing up with a book collector as a father, helped create my love of books, and I always felt right at home inside the library. Honestly, I couldn’t help but be disappointed by thoughts of losing my beloved bookshelves and aged lunchroom. I was terrified of missing my chance to learn the art of the darkroom. I didn’t want to say goodbye to the twisting hallways of the fine arts basement, and the paint and pastels covering the walls of the AP art studio. Despite everything I felt I may miss, I knew there was one thing I would gain. A true music space.

 

Crammed

In my time spent in the orchestra and rock band, we have always been crammed. Last year, we crammed eight people into the worn out rock band room, plus two sets of drums, two bass guitars, three keyboards, tons of guitars, about one million amps, and all of our sound equipment. In orchestra, we have to fit 45 people in chairs, not to mention all of our instruments, stands, and cases. Because of all this, the first thing I became excited about was the new music room. We were told that not only would we have a larger space to fit our full orchestra and all of the rock band equipment, but the walls would also be soundproof. This would mean that the photography class would no longer hear us squeaking out scales in strings, and art students working through lunch would no longer hear the middle school rock band blasting out chords. I couldn’t help but

imagine the new orchestra, with plenty of space for every bass player to use the bows to their full extent.

Cozy Renovations

Beyond the tight quarters of the fine arts building, our lunchroom was no longer conducive to how much our small school had grown since it’s opening as an all-girls, prep school in 1915. It was in the plans to renovate our cozy eatery, but I’m not sure anyone was truly prepared for our makeshift dining area. Not only is the auditorium still a tight squeeze, but it became impossible for the theatre department to use their dedicated space. Our food schedule became a two-week rotation, meaning we’d be eating the same food over and over again. By the time ninth grade was over, I’d ordered more food than I ever expected I would. I know in the end, everything will be worth the time spent waiting on lunchtime to arrive, because I'll get my music space, the theatre kids will receive a completely renovated black box, art students will have a larger gallery, and makery enthusiasts will find themselves immersed within the workings of wood tools. Despite my initial concern over change, I now realize that the choice to update our campus was an ideal one.

 

 

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