WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Kids will head back to school Monday and students at Laney High School will notice some big changes.
After months of construction, the school has a new gym and media center.
New Hanover County Schools celebrated the opening of the two Wednesday with a ribbon-cutting and dedication ceremony.
The funding for the projects was a part of the 2014 Bond Referendum.
The ceremony began with a welcome from Laney Principal Sharon Dousharm and included remarks from Board Chairman Edward B. Higgins. Doug Sherwood, of Sawyer, Sherwood & Associate Architecture, presented details about the new facilities.
Athletic Director Fred Lynch gave a brief history of the gym including the times when Laney’s most famous alumnus, Michael Jordan, played in the old gym.
The new gym seats 1,600 people and is more than 20,000 square feet. The gym features two new boys team rooms and two new girls team rooms along with renovated locker rooms, an Athletic Director’s office with a new workspace, two coaches offices with workspaces, two classrooms, a new lobby with a concessions area and public restrooms, and the Nike/Michael Jordan Jump Man logo on center court.
The total cost of gymnasium construction is $7,697,464.18.
The new media center totals 11,100 square feet and features two new study rooms, one testing/accommodations room, and one makerspace room, which is a room for students to create hands-on, 3-D projects, such as printing, sewing, and soldering. The room has a sink and built-in casework to store materials and supplies. There is also a workroom, a café/lounge seating area, and WiFi points throughout, which enable students to access the technology they need to complete homework, special assignments, and projects.
The total cost of media center construction is $2,717,857.