By Deb, Tim & Skyler Smith
It was on Tuesday, June 25, with the sweet scent of summer sitting tantalizingly on the horizon, when we pulled out of Mendon for this mission. We were headed into the HF-L campus in Honeoye Falls to meet with Superintendent Gene Mancuso and Director of Facilities Aaron Smith to receive an update on summer Capital Improvement Plan renovations at the school district. It seems like that was just yesterday. With summer on the wane and the back-to-school commercials cacophonously cluttering the airwaves, we’re here to let you kids know what to expect when you head back next week.
It was the first time Skyler had seen Mr. Mancuso since his graduation a little over a year before, so they had a nice reunion. As the five of us assembled, Gene joked about being the only non-Smith in the contingency. We Smiths took it easy on him and thanked him for his participation.
In approaching the busy summer, Aaron Smith summed up his philosophy as follows. He said, “I set my goal on every project to be under budget and ahead of schedule. Keeping that goal in focus and capturing every time and money savings opportunity that presents itself makes for a successful project . . . even if you fall short of the goal.”
When we checked in recently to see if there had been any bumps in the road he said, Oddly enough, there aren’t any anomalies that stand out in my mind, which is a good thing.” Here is a building-by-building breakdown of what went down this summer.
HIGH SCHOOL ~ If you went by the high school anytime this summer you would have noticed that the whole front of the building was torn apart. The goal there was to create a new safe, clearly marked and accessible main entrance to the high school. The cafeteria and serving areas have been totally overhauled and the 1940’s era bus/maintenance garage will be coming down in the spring of 2020 to make space for more parking.
MIDDLE SCHOOL ~ The main project in this building was in the District Auditorium. Upgraded sound and projection equipment were the goals achieved here.
MANOR SCHOOL ~ Far and away the most noticeable work site here during the summer was the playground which was excavated and replaced. The counseling and nurse area were also renovated and the art space was renovated and expanded.
LIMA BUILDING ~ Indoors, work was done on installing a new elevator and renovating the classrooms affected by that installation. Outdoors you’ll notice a new bus loop and replacement of the exterior stairs and entryway will be ongoing.
PHYS ED AND ATHLETICS ~ The most interesting development in this area is the construction of a new multi-purpose turf field which can accommodate baseball, softball as well as full sized rectangular fields for sports like soccer and lacrosse. There are also seven new tennis courts.
So while the end of summer can certainly be bittersweet, let your silver lining be that if you are heading back to school next week, no matter what building you’re headed toward, you can look forward to some nice improvements.