The Douglas County Board of Education is moving forward with the plan to build a new multi-purpose arena, with an eye toward the goal of bringing graduations for the county’s five high schools and other types of events closer to home.

At their Nov. 1 board meeting BOE members discussed and approved the demolition of the old 9030 Highway 5 Central Office building.

The school system plans to demolish the old central office, which was located in a converted warehouse built in the 1970s that was purchased by DCSS in 1986.

Kwame Carr, assistant superintendent of district operations for DCSS, contacted through email, confirmed that RA-LIN and Associates will demolish the old building at an estimated cost of $300,000.

According to Carr prep work is underway to demolish the former Central Office, with demolition scheduled to begin Dec. 13.

“The entire demolition process is brief. However, many factors remain after demolition, including site work for mechanical, engineering, plumbing, utilities, grading, and concrete work,” he said.

Following the demolition construction will start on the new Douglas County School System Graduation Arena. The bond is set for $30 million dollars. RA-LIN won the bid for the project through the RFP process.

The 6,000-seat multipurpose arena will also host cheerleading competitions, athletic events, concerts, and other community events.

Though also previously considered Carr said that the arena will not feature an indoor track.

“Construction of the new Douglas County Graduation Arena will allow us to seat 6,000 guests comfortably. It will also enable the Douglas County School System to bring first-class educational, cultural, and athletic events to the area,” Carr said.

School graduations are held now about 40 minutes away at the University of West Georgia coliseum in Carrollton.

“The Douglas County School System has long enjoyed an excellent partnership with the University of West Georgia. The university has been our preferred location for graduation in the past because it has been the only facility that could reasonably accommodate our graduating seniors, their guests, and our faculty and staff,” Carr said.

With the addition of the new multi-purpose arena, which will allow graduations to move closer to home and within the county will also benefit local SPLOST revenues going forward, with that revenue now being lost to Carroll County.

The new Graduation Arena is scheduled to be completed in the early summer of 2023, an earlier projection than previously planned, Carr said.

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