Construction at three Wise County high schools on schedule, under budget

WISE, Va. (WYMT/Bristol Herald Courier) - Construction at three high schools in Wise County is on schedule and under budget, school officials said.

New schools are being built for Union High School in Big Stone Gap and Central High School in Wise, while Eastside High School in Coeburn is getting an addition and undergoing renovation, said Jeff Perry, superintendent of schools.

The new buildings should be open for students in January 2014, while Eastside is expected to be open this fall.

"We hope to move students to Eastside in August," Perry said.

"They've [the students] been moved to St. Paul so the workers would have free rein inside the school for construction."

The projects come after years of contentious discussion among school leaders, parents and county residents about what to do with the school system's aging, outdated facilities. Many opposed closing the smaller, community schools.

The budget for the new buildings is $25 million each, said Ron Vicars, the school system's director of finance. The renovation at Eastside was budgeted at $8.5 million.

Bristol Herald Courier story:

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