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Gateway High build is complete

By SPECIAL TO THE CITIZEN - | May 12, 2021


The School District of Lee County’s newest school, Gateway High School has been completed ahead of schedule.

“Our scholars, faculty and staff are  thrilled and ready for August. We cannot wait to start the school year in the brand new building,” said Gateway High School Principal Neketa Watson in a prepared statement “I’m excited to have construction completed early. This gives us time to get furniture in place and properly plan for a smooth transition into our new facility.”

Located at near the intersection of State Road 82 and Griffin Drive, the three-story Gateway High School sits on 55.6 acres, totals approximately 300,000 square feet and will accommodate more than 2,000 students.

Suffolk provided preconstruction and construction management services for the project.

Construction began in September 2019.

In addition to Cambridge AICE (Advanced International Certificate of Education), Advanced Placement and AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) curriculum options, students can sign up for one of the school’s four career academies that include programs that offer job training for cyber security, the medical field, veterinarian services and carpentry. In addition to classrooms, academies and administrative areas, the school includes a media center, gymnasium, cafeteria, weight room, locker rooms, field house and theater.

“We are proud to continue our partnership with the Lee County School District and be able to deliver this project well ahead of the school’s opening date of August 2021,” said Suffolk General Manager Josh Christensen in a prepared statement. “With comprehensive collaboration and strong communication amongst our team, the early completion of this project will allow additional time for staff to familiarize themselves with the space, conduct real-world training, and get settled ahead of the school year.”

As part of the preconstruction process, Suffolk implemented a 3D modeling effort alongside the District, design team, and key trade partners.

The entire building was modeled including critical areas such as the central energy plant and congested overhead spaces in corridors. During the reoccurring coordination meetings, the team was able to effectively identify and address any items related to constructability, in addition to creating more streamlined fabrication schedules allowing for acceleration during the COVID-19 pandemic, officials said.

Suffolk previously worked with the Lee County School District on multiple projects including the rebuild of Dunbar High School which consisted of demolition of approximately 130,000 square feet of existing structure on the campus, as well as 170,000 square feet of new construction. Two existing buildings on campus also received extensive renovations.

For more information, visit https://ghs.leeschools.net.