Electrical contractors begin installation of a new lamp at the main entrance of the Miami Valley Career Technology Center as part of significant work on upgrades and expansion this summer. The CTC has reworked the parking lot and entrance/exit into the facility and land for new buildings have been leveled for foundation work. A bond issue/tax levy was passed in 2017 for a five-year campus makeover to establish one building, instead of the current multiple buildings, for safety concerns of the students. TY GREENLEES / STAFF
Photo: Ty Greenlees
Photo: Ty Greenlees

Miami Valley CTC’s $150 million project underway as school year begins

High school students starting the new school year at the Miami Valley Career Technology Center on Thursday and Friday will see the first signs of work on the MVCTC’s $154 million expansion and upgrade project.

Superintendent Nick Weldy said contractors are about three months into the huge project after a May 17 groundbreaking and have plumbing and gas lines replaced. Construction is expected to take four and a half years to complete.

MORE: How a $130M school expansion could help businesses find more workers

“This project is focused on upgrading safety and security systems and protocols, enhancing career-technical and academic programming, modernizing major utilities, and providing more space to accept additional students who are currently being turned away,” Weldy said.

In recent years, MVCTC has served 1,500 to 1,800 high school students in dozens of fields ranging from carpentry to machining and computer coding to agriculture. But Weldy said MVCTC has been turning away hundreds of students because it did not have room.

That was a key part of the 2017 levy campaign, as local employers have said there is a need for more skilled trade workers to fill positions. Voters approved the levy 51 percent to 49 percent.

Because voters approved local tax funding for the majority of the $154 million, the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission is providing $28.3 million.

MORE: State treasurer talks job skills, finances with CTC students

Weldy said he expects MVCTC to be able to serve well over 2,000 high school students every year once the project is finished.

The campus on the east side of Hoke Road in Englewood has separate buildings, and the project will put more of the campus under one roof to improve safety, while also increasing square footage.

“We are working with the construction, technology, and safety/security contractors to ensure the facility has modern safety and security systems in place,” Weldy said.

MVCTC officials have also said the project will allow the school to upgrade some equipment in programs like welding and machining, so students are training on tools employers use now.

The construction work is led by Gilbane Building Company and is scheduled to take until the end of 2023 to complete. Some sections that are being remodeled and expanded will be open as early as December 2020.

MORE: Career Center plans five-year expansion after levy narrowly passes

Weldy said the construction project will bring some disruption to classes, but planning has been in place to ensure it is minimal. The front parking lot has already been expanded to make up for spaces lost to construction. The work this school year will take place behind or on the side of current facilities.

“The MVCTC will continue to offer all career-technical programs throughout the entire remodeling and expansion project,” Weldy said. “These are career-technical programs in demand by area business and industry leaders.”

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