New Canaan Schools To Assess Saxe Auditorium Renovations

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New Canaan Schools Facilities Director Bob Willoughby, left, and Visual and Performing Arts Director Alan Sneath meet inside the Saxe Middle School Auditorium. Photo Credit: Melvin Mason

NEW CANAAN, Conn. – The New Canaan Board of Education wants to have a study done before going forward with a renovation project on the Saxe Middle School auditorium.

The district wants to detail its approach to the renovations for the auditorium and not do the work piecemeal, Schools Superintendent Mary Kolek said. “We want to understand the entire scope” of what needs to be done, Kolek said. “We want to be comprehensive in the planning phase so it’s good for the long run.”

School officials have discussed renovating the auditorium for several years, citing small and broken seats and a poor sound system. A request for $175,000 was included in the school board’s proposed $78.79 million budget request for the 2013-14 school year before it was presented to the Board of Selectmen. But it was among the $990,000 in capital project cuts that the selectmen recommended. The school budget will be reviewed by the Board of Finance on Feb. 7.

Once a design study is completed, the district will ask the Board of Selectmen, Board of Finance and Town Council to discuss can and should be done with the auditorium.

Kolek said she was not sure how much a full renovation would cost. “Next year is the planning and then we anticipate getting support for the implementation phase,” she said.

The auditorium is used for school events and other community functions, including the New Canaan Republican Town Committee Caucus.

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