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School construction projects underway

Photo by Johnny Jackson 
School officials said construction and renovations are apace for a December completion at Forest Park High School.

Photo by Johnny Jackson School officials said construction and renovations are apace for a December completion at Forest Park High School.

JONESBORO — School campuses around Clayton County are active this summer with construction projects.

There are 17 different construction sites in the public school district worth $124.6 million combined. Some are near completion and others are just getting off the ground.

Chief Operations Officer Dr. Cephus Jackson said the bulk of the projects involve renovation and modernization. They are funded primarily through the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax, which is projected to collect $289 million over five years. The 1-cent sales tax expires Dec. 31, 2014.

Construction at Forest Park High School is expected to cost about $21.7 million to bring the school into the 21st century. The two-story facility dates back to the 1960s.

Mableton-based Nix-Fowler Constructors Inc. began construction in May 2012 and is expected to complete the project by January.

Jackson said there is also new construction.

Adding a magnet high school to the district’s Performing Arts Center in Jonesboro will cost $18.8 million. Grading on the property began in February. Cumming-based Cooper & Co. General Contractors Inc. is expected to finish the project by June 2014.

The school will be three-story addition to the center, said Jackson. It will be able to house 898 students and will include state-of-the-art classrooms and laboratories.

“It’s going to be nice,” said Jackson. “And we have some talented students that will do us proud in it.”

Jackson said elementary schools are also being outfitted with controlled access entrances with security doors and cameras. He said the installations, which began a couple of years ago, are being phased in over the life of SPLOST IV.

The ongoing SPLOST IV-funded projects are at Anderson Elementary, Church Street Elementary, McGarrah Elementary, Northcutt Elementary, Pointe South Elementary, Riverdale Elementary, Swint Elementary, Babb Middle, Forest Park Middle, Lovejoy Middle, Mundy’s Mill Middle, Forest Park High, Morrow High, Mundy’s Mill High, Elite Scholars Academy, the Morrow Annex and the Performing Arts Center.

The district also has plans for additions and renovations at Harper Elementary, Lake Ridge Elementary, Tara Elementary, Fountain Elementary, West Clayton Elementary, Oliver Elementary, Lake City Elementary, Suder Elementary, Lee Street Elementary, Kilpatrick Elementary and M.D. Roberts Middle. Those projects will cost an estimated $69 million combined. Officials plan to allocate $120,000 to re-roof Elite Scholars Academy.