BEND, OR -- The students of Highland Magnet School at Kenwood School lost their gym last winter, when the roof collapsed under a snow load. But, a new gymnasium is starting to take shape on the west side of Bend. Concrete was poured this week for the foundation and a third of the walls.
A temporary 5,500 sf military tent, on loan from Mt. Bachelor, was erected in August, to provide the kids a place to hold gym class. Principal Brian Kissell says the tent has worked out well, but everyone is looking forward to the return of a permanent structure. "The progress on the gym has been incredibly fast. As soon as we closed out the tent permit, we pretty much jumped right into the construction process for the new gym." He adds, "The whole construction crew has just been really fantastic about being able to capitalize on every good weather day. And then, when we've had some kind of downturns in the weather, they've been able to really minimize any time lost, and really continue making progress on all the different parts of the project."
Kissell tells KBND News the students are staying out from underfoot, but that doesn't mean they're not part of the process, "It's still fascinating to watch and some of our kindergarten classes have a front row seat out their window[s] and get to see the big trucks moving around and get to enjoy that."
If construction continues at its current rate, Kissell says, "It looks like we'll be opening the new gym for fall next year, which is fantastic news."
Aerial view of the roof collapse at Highland Magnet School at Kenwood, taken January 12, 2017