North Allegheny holding pair of meetings to discuss construction at 2 grade schools |
North Hills

North Allegheny holding pair of meetings to discuss construction at 2 grade schools

Tony LaRussa
VEBH Architects
The current entrance to McKnight Elementary in McCandless school will be changed as part of a renovation and expansion project being developed by the North Allegheny School District.
VEBH Architects
North Allegheny’s planned $30-million renovation and expansion of the Franklin Elementary school building in Franklin Park includes replacing the entrance.

The North Allegheny School District has scheduled two informational meetings for residents interested in learning more about the proposed renovations of the Franklin and McKnight elementary school buildings.

The first meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on Wednesday in the Franklin Park Elementary School gymnasium at 2401 Rochester Road in Franklin Park.

A second meeting will be held on Feb. 11 in the cafeteria at McKnight Elementary, which is located at 500 Cumberland Road in McCandless.

Both meetings will be video-taped and broadcast by the district.

The district is planning a $30 million addition and renovation of Franklin Park Elementary. When completed, the project will nearly double the size of the building from its current capacity of 525 students to about 900 pupils.

The additional capacity is needed to accommodate growth, according to school officials.

Since 2015, the district’s enrollment has increased by 341 students, according to a report issued by the district outlining the findings of a a recent demographic study. The report anticipates that the district’s current enrollment of 8,496 students — the larges among suburban districts in Allegheny County — will swell to as much as 8,801 by 2026.

Plans for work at McKnight Elementary include major changes to the site that involves reconfiguration of the area where parents drop off and pick up children, the addition of a canopy over the main entrance and relocation of play areas to make room for a 5,400-square-foot addition to house art classrooms. The building also is scheduled for significant renovations.

The district has budgeted $18.2 million for the work at McKnight. Final costs for the project are still being developed. The last time major work was performed at McKnight was in 1999.

Work on both buildings is scheduled to begin at the end of the current school year and be completed by the start of the 2020 school year.

Tony LaRussa is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tony at 724-772-6368 or [email protected] or via Twitter @TonyLaRussaTrib.