The Chelsea High School gym is currently undergoing renovations that are expected to be completed by the start of the 2021-2022 school year.
The renovations include the addition of an auxiliary gym, a weight room, and the renovation of the current gyms at the high school and the Washington Street Education Center.
“The new weight room and the auxiliary gym are going to be huge for PE classes and for all of our athletic teams,” Athletic Director Brad Bush said. “We’ll have expanded training room space at the high school, so we’ll be able to do all kinds of things that we’ve never been able to do.”
In the Chelsea School District, there are many school sponsored teams and athletic youth programs. The additional gym space is critical to helping juggle practices for all athletes and will allow many sports to practice at more convenient times.
“We’re starving for more gym space with how many school sponsored teams we have as well as a lot of the youth programs in the community, and our gym space falls short of [what we need] currently,” Coach Adam Taylor said. “With the addition, the mindset is that you could theoretically practice men’s and women’s basketball in the same time slot in both gyms.”
In addition to helping provide more gym time for athletes in the Chelsea School District, the addition of an auxiliary gym and new weight room will also allow for the expansion of what the athletic programs can currently provide.
“It will provide spaces for off season workouts, we’ll be able to run games [in the auxiliary gym] and the expanded size of the weight room will enable us to do things, not just in class, but in our summer program that we haven’t been able to do, where we can have more people in there at one time,” Bush said.
As well as impacting athletes across the district, Bush said that the renovations will impact all the students, including those in gym classes.
“For the strength and conditioning classes and the freshman fitness classes, we won’t have any space restrictions at all,” Taylor said. “We’re more than doubling [the space] we currently have right now for the weight room, so that’s a big deal, to be able to train two to three classes in there at one time.”
The current high school gym and the Washington Street Education Center gym will also undergo renovations to the facilities, including redoing painting, lighting, bleachers and sound. The floors will also be redone. The school is aiming to have these renovations complete by the end of this coming summer.
“The hope is that the majority of everything you see in the gym, the new auxiliary gym and the WSEC will be done for the first day of school next year,” Bush said.
The renovations come as part of a bond passed in 2019 to renovate the buildings all throughout the Chelsea School District.
“The renovation at the gym is just one of many projects across the school district that’s going to be happening over the next few years,” Bush said. “I think it’s important to note that the bond will impact every building, classroom, and student in the school district,” Bush said.
Bush said these are “exciting times” to see the results of all the renovations that the buildings need.
“The high school is the newest building in the district, and it’s almost twenty-five years old,”Bush explained. “A lot of the kinds of things we are doing are really needed at all of our buildings. I’m looking forward to getting it done, and I think people when they see it finished will be really excited about it, too.”
While it will be exciting for students, coaches, teachers and parents to see the results of the renovations, it’s also important to remember how lucky the school is to have them.
“[The district is] very lucky, and it’s a big deal for us to get that space, both the gym and the weight room,” Taylor said. “[Students] probably don’t realize how lucky they are, but [having these renovations is] very fortunate.”