Board gives go-ahead to vote Voters will decide fate of proposal in a special election on Oct. 17

Board gives go-ahead to vote
Voters will decide fate
of proposal in a special
election on Oct. 17

EAST BRUNSWICK — Township voters will head to the polls twice this fall, once for the general election in November and once to decide the fate of the proposed Churchill Junior High School expansion in October.

On Thursday, the Board of Education made the proposal a reality when it voted in favor of a resolution providing for a special election for consideration of a school bond proposal for the junior high school.

The special election will be from 2 to 9 p.m. Oct. 17.

According to the proposal, the board "is authorized to provide for the construction of additions and renovations at Churchill Junior High School, including acquisition and installation of furnishings and equipment and site work."

The expected cost is $26,835,000.

In November, the board unveiled plans to add onto the junior high school, which opened in the 1960s on Norton Street. In addition to the 91,000-square-foot building, the school has also used the adjacent Smith School to house its eighth-grade students for the last 14 years.

With the 38,000-square-foot Smith School, Churchill Junior High School has a total capacity of 1,371. However, the school is close to capacity with 1,353 students and the board expects the school’s enrollment to reach 1,600 between now and 2005.

The plans for the school, which were designed by district architect Jeff Venezia, call for a 66,000-square-foot facility linking the two buildings, which are approximately 600 feet apart.

The new structure will include a four-station gymnasium and auxiliary gym and a cafeteria with a capacity for 900, with an enclosed corridor linking the two buildings. In addition, Churchill’s current gymnasium will be renovated to include two floors, the lower containing a media center. A corridor from the second floor, which will contain administrative offices, will link the building to the new central facility.

Five new science labs and six demonstration rooms will also be added with Churchill’s current multi-purpose room turned into band space.

The proposed plan also calls for the removal of bus traffic on Norton Road, where 26 buses drop off and pick up students each day.

— Melissa Kress