VANDALIA – The sight of bulldozers, cement trucks, and construction workers on the Butler High School campus has led to some questions about what the school district is building according to Vandalia-Butler City Schools Superintendent Brad Neavin.
The answer to that question is simple – nothing.
The building being constructed along Dixie Drive in front of Memorial Stadium will become the new Vandalia Branch Library, part of the Dayton Metro Library system. The new branch is part of an extensive construction and renovation project funded by an $187 million bond issue passed in November 2012.
There are no school funds being spent on the library branch itself, although the district will incur some renovation cost when it moves its administrative offices into the old library building. The new library branch is scheduled to be completed late in 2016, so the Board of Education offices will likely not move until 2017.
“Yes, we are in a partnership with the library, but the funds for the new branch come from the bond monies that county voters approved in 2012,” said Neavin. “In fact, we are benefiting because the library will be tearing down our old building at their expense.”
Neavin said that an estimate of the renovation costs has not been completed yet. An architect will be asked to give a rough rendering of the “programming” of the existing library branch before the district issues a request for proposal (RFP) for the actual design and renovation.
“We have not talked about a budget for renovation yet,” he said. “We will have Board meetings that will hear input from the public and then they (the Board) will ultimately decide what can be spent.”
Neavin said that renovation costs were going to be needed regardless of the move to the old library building due to the poor condition of the Board of Education’s current office.
“The layout of this building doesn’t maximize space, and it is an eyesore in the community,” said Neavin. “We were going to have to spend money either way. We and the Board will do all we can to minimize those costs.”
The The new library branch will be approximately 20,000 square feet and is scheduled to be completed in late 2016.