Alden-Conger celebrates new addition

Published 1:00 pm Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Alden-Conger Public School District officials and city residents celebrated the completion of the more than $2 million addition to the school Friday and Saturday during an open house and dedication.

The 15,000-square-foot addition will be the new home of Alden city offices, a meeting room, a fitness center, a gymnasium and new classrooms for the school.

It was made possible with a $1.79 million bond issue, along with contributions from the city and from the late LeVerne Carlson.

Email newsletter signup

During a tour of the facility on Friday, Alden-Conger Superintendent Joe Guanella said the community center will fill many needs, including those of the school and the city of Alden.

Entering the addition from the street, people will first come across the city offices and meeting room. The school district will be able to use the meeting room during the day, while the city can use the room at night for meetings such as Alden City Council meetings.

“It’s a real good partnership because of needs we have,” Guanella said. “Mine are in the day; theirs are at night.”

After the city offices and meeting room to the right is the new gymnasium with large windows, a rubber floor, basketball hoops and an elevated walking track.

Fifteen laps on the walking track equal a mile, the superintendent said.

The gymnasium will also be a multi-use facility, he noted.

Next to the gym is the fitness center, named after Carlson, which features weight-lifting and cardio Cybex machinery. Nearby are locker rooms.

While normal hours for the building will be 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., members will be able to use a card to swipe into the facility after-hours.

In addition to these amenities, there are also two new classrooms that are part of the addition, including one high school science classroom and another for early childhood and family education.

Guanella said general discussions for the project began in 2005 regarding the needs for the school and the community.

In 2006, leaders talked about a smaller project in the $500,000 range with a science room and a fitness center, Guanella said. That same year, leaders found out about the donation from Carlson.

In 2007, city and school leaders acquired the property for the project, and in the fall of 2008 they broke ground.

“Just a big thank you to everyone who’s worked so hard,” Guanella said.