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Design work for Baraboo middle school’s renovation and expansion project kicked off in April, and planners expect to break ground in just under a year.

Brian Horras, a construction manager with Madison-based CG Schmidt, laid out the project timeline at a Baraboo School Board meeting late last month. He said the schematic design phase — a preliminary step that includes looking at building layouts and defining the scope of the work — will conclude in July.

More detailed plans will be developed from August through November, after which another two to four months will be spent finalizing and reviewing plans, as well as seeking bids for the project.

Construction is slated to begin next May and finish in September 2021.

“So it’s a long process,” Horras said. “A lot of different thoughts and ideas have to go into these drawings, and groups have to meet to make sure that the final design we put together is really going to work for the district for a lot of years.”

Voters approved a $41.7 million referendum April 2 to update and add space to Jack Young Middle School. District leaders estimated then the expansion would add about 45,000 square feet to the more-than-40-year-old building.

Eppstein Uhen Architects, based in Milwaukee, is partnering with CG Schmidt on the project. They also both worked on the $22 million Baraboo High School renovation and addition, which finished last summer — on time and on budget, according to school board members.

Brian Hearn of EUA said the planning team, including school administrators and board members, and a core team have met to look at floor plans and get feedback. They will continue to do that this month in further detail, expanding to 3D images and refined drawings.

He said they were discussing the general layout and what academic spaces can be adjacent to each other. One of the problems with the current middle school building is that sound travels too easily between classrooms, and spaces that should offer confidentiality — such as student services and counselors’ offices — don’t.

“We’re really excited to get started, but we’re also really wanting to flesh out as many ideas as we can to make sure that this solution is going to be long-term and effective,” Hearn said.

Project leaders will present at future board meetings any time they hit a project milestone, Horras said.

Follow Susan Endres on Twitter @EndresSusan or call her at 745-3506.

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