New Albany News

Donor's $1.5M will add amenities to new school building


An anonymous donor has given the New Albany-Plain Local School District a $1.5 million promissory note for its new school building.

Kevin Harrison of the Harrison Planning Group, the district's consultant for the project, said the funds will be used to add several features to the building.

The exterior will now include a higher roof at the building's center, chimneys to hide the building's exhaust system, a larger central portico and a cupola, which had been cut from the project because of funding.

Inside, the building will have larger windows and an additional 960 square feet with four collaboration spaces and four community spaces.

Harrison said the donor has not been named and he expects the district to make an announcement about the donation in the next few weeks.

Harrison told the school board Oct. 30 the building is $44,410 under budget as of Oct. 22.

The two-story, 150,000-square-foot building and accompanying site improvements are being funded by a $45.1 million, 2.59-mill bond issue voters approved last November.

The district is expected to open one-third to one-half of the first floor of the building in fall 2014 and the rest of the building by the end of December 2014, Harrison said.

District officials already have completed the exterior design and held their final interior design session Oct. 30.

Harrison said planners have shown students, staff members and the community several interior options, featuring four color profiles and options for flooring and wall patterns.

Planners are expected to analyze the feedback before determining the final interior design, Harrison said.

In addition, Harrison has donated a camera for the project. It is mounted on top of the nearby 2-5 elementary building and takes a photo of the construction site every 30 minutes.

The images may be accessed on the school district's website at or on a smartphone app that can be downloaded at