The Wallace Elementary/ Middle School campus is bustling with activity beyond that which is associated with the start of a new school year. Preliminary site work has begun for a new Wallace school, which was made possible by a $20 million bond referendum in 2012.
The school district held a groundbreaking ceremony earlier this month, and last week the contractor, Thompson Turner Construction of Sumter, set up a mobile office on the site.
The new school will be built behind the existing school on Highway 9. Students will remain in the old building until the new one is ready for occupancy, at which time the old one will be demolished.
Project Manager Tim Brown said temporary fencing has been installed between the existing school and the new construction site to separate the two for the safety of students and staff.
In addition, a temporary surface has been laid for a connecting road that will allow for students to be dropped off on Highway 9 rather than Old Wire Road.
Demolition work has begun at the rear of the building, with asphalt from the parking area and bus loop being removed. The next step will be demolishing the band room, which is also at the rear of the building, but this has not begun yet because it will require asbestos abatement.
Grading of the site will begin within the next two weeks, Brown said.
Architects with Jumper Carter Sease have said the construction should take about 14 months.