high school contractor in Palo Alto

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April 25, 2019

Henry M. Gunn High School Central Building project complete

high school contractor in Palo Alto

Alten Construction recently wrapped up construction on the Henry M. Gunn High School’s Central Building project.

Alten Construction began working on the $21 million project, which consisted of a new two-story central building and the upgrade and modernization of the existing Spangenberg Theatre, in May 2017. The school’s music building and old library were demolished prior to the start of construction, and the 39,000-square-foot project was finished in February 2019.

Situated in the center of campus, the new Central Building has five new classrooms for the media arts and social science programs, as well as areas for student activities. A wellness center is located on the second floor with space for guidance, counseling and psychologist offices.

A 35-foot vertical Performing Arts Center sign attached to the front of the Central Building serves as the focal point of the project, which also features bright pastel exterior color on cement plaster, extensive glass windows and a second-floor roof radius, providing an overhang for the lower level and balcony.

“It’s really the first thing you see,” said Noel Stenberg, project manager for Alten Construction. “It definitely catches your eye. It’s a pretty substantial upgrade both aesthetically and in terms of modernization.”

As part of the Spangenberg Theatre modernization, Alten Construction built two large band and choral classrooms and other smaller instrument practice rooms, which will further enhance the school’s music and performing arts program. The addition also includes an improved lobby, offices, restrooms and instrument storage space.

Both of the music rooms feature special upside down pyramid-shaped ceiling panels, acoustical wall panels and acoustic doors.

“You don’t see this kind of room every day,” said Stenberg. “It’s different from your run-of-the-mill classroom. I think that the students and the school are going to enjoy the new modernized student center building and new upgraded theatre building. It’s almost like a new quad area, and I think it’ll be an exciting new gathering place for students.”