POTTSTOWN PA – Some folks in the Pottsgroves, including a couple of members of the Board of School Directors, refer to it as a “patio.” Officially, according to one news report of years ago, it was considered a “presentation area.” Those inclined to be less charitable label it as “ugly” or “an eyesore.”
To be sure, strong opinions are held about the value of a circular, brick wall-enclosed concrete slab at the northeast side of the Kauffman Road entrance to Pottsgrove High School. It’s adorned at one end with a larger-than-life – and a few claim equally unsightly and even scary – statue of a mascot falcon.
There seems to be near unanimous agreement that something should be done with, or to, the area to make it more attractive and usable. The waist-high wall’s top mantel is chipped and crumbling. Its brickwork is streaked with efflorescence, caused by severe water penetration and damage similar to that repaired at significant cost last year at Pottsgrove Middle School. And the falcon? That bird’s feathers look like they haven’t weathered well.
Although discussion of the patio’s future rates low on a scale of what’s important among $30 million worth of proposed high school renovations, the subject was nonetheless raised last Tuesday (April 23, 2013) by Michael Kelly, principal of project development at KCBA Architects. The school board hired his firm to conduct a feasibility study on upgrading and repairing the building, which is the subject of a second public meeting tonight (Monday, April 29, 2013) at 7:30 in the high school cafeteria, 1345 Kauffman Rd.
Kelly chose a path of politeness in talking about the space. “It’s not in a nice state,” he admitted, as heads in the Tuesday night audience nodded in assent. “It isn’t being utilized,” he added.
While the masonry that embodies it is “falling apart,” as Kelly put it, it remains “a great space.” He envisions it might be returned to its originally intended purpose, for use in concerts staged by the high school band, its various ensembles, or choruses.
The problem there, some in the audience suggested, is a lack of adequate listener seating. Another problem, board members hinted, is that the space could remain little-used and still require maintenance and upkeep. “Maybe we should just get rid of it,” was the rumble heard among directors. Nothing’s been decided yet, and won’t be until June, according to Superintendent Shellie Feola.
What might stay, although located elsewhere and the probably only if it can be refurbished, is what was said to be the gift of the gray-and-now-pink (faded from maroon) falcon statue.
Related (to Pottsgrove High reconstruction):
- ‘Grove’s Smallest Renovation: What To Do With ‘Patio?’
- Pottsgrove Not Alone In Looking At STEM; College Is Too
- Monday Forum Seeks Input On Pottsgrove High Plans
- First Looks Offered For Renovations At Pottsgrove High
- Pottsgrove Now Plans 2 Meetings On High School Project
- Tick-Tock! Contractors Met Timetable At Pottsgrove HS
- Pottsgrove High Classes Unaffected By Smoking Heater
- Search Starts For Feasibility Study Vendor At Pottsgrove
- Upgrades Could Enhance STEM Education At Pottsgrove
- Pottsgrove Seeks Study On High School Project Wish List
- Board OKs Air Repairs As Start Of Fixes At High School
- Pottsgrove Hires Mechanicsburg Architect For HS Review
- Directors OK Engineering Study For High School Systems
- With Ringing Project Done, Pottsgrove Eyes HS Repairs
- Committee: Pottsgrove High Needs Work, Not Renovation
- Response Mixed To Pottsgrove Improvements
Related (to the Pottsgrove Board of School Directors’ April 23 meeting):