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Work on new sidewalks, other upgrades under way at Hampton Middle School

| Monday, Aug. 22, 2016, 2:12 p.m.

Expect new sidewalks to surround Hampton Middle School before winter.

Demolition of the school's deteriorating, 13-year-old walkways was scheduled to begin Aug. 22 as part of a facelift slated to include a new concrete planter at the school's entrance.

“Students will be able to sit around the planter while they're waiting to be picked up from after-school activities,” said Marlynn Lux, the school's new acting principal and former assistant principal.

Hampton school directors voted Aug. 8 to accept a $365,071 bid from M & B Services of Clarion County to create the planter, replace the school's sidewalks and rebuild a set of concrete steps next to the school district's administration building.

“Our maintenance workers would always put in a lot of time each summer, doing patchwork, and then that patchwork would slowly deteriorate through winter months,” Lux said. The condition of the walkways and steps has gone from “an aesthetically unpleasing situation to a potentially unsafe situation,” said Jeff Kline, director of administrative services for the school district.

“Right outside my office, there's a staircase that's part of this project,” Kline said. “Parts of the stairs are starting to crumble.”

“I don't think anybody here is happy with the work that was done back then,” he said. “We would have expected to get a minimum of 15 to 20 years out of it.”

VEBH Architects of Mt. Lebanon drew the blueprints for the new, narrower sidewalks and entrance area slated for completion in mid-October.

Work to remove and replace the sidewalks will begin on the rear side of Hampton Middle School, near entrances to the cafeteria and library.

Work on the school's entrance area is expected to begin in the middle of September, Lux said.

“The student drop-off area, located in the rear of the building, will not be affected by the work,” according to the school district's website. “All demolition work will be performed between the hours of 3 and 5 p.m. weekdays, after normal school operating hours.

“All on-site workers will obtain the required background checks and security clearances prior to commencing work,” according to the website. “On-site workers will not be permitted into the school building at any time during the school day.”

Deborah Deasy is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 724-772-6369 or ddeasy@tribweb.com.

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