Yorkville officials want to expand as smaller classes graduate and larger ones move into the building on Game Farm Road.
But the project’s scope and price tag are still being determined.
“We know we need a fieldhouse and an auditorium and some additional classrooms,” District 115 Superintendent Scott Wakeley said Tuesday. “Now we need to find an architect to find out what that type of project is going to cost and how we can make this project as cost efficient and cost effective as possible.”
Officials have been discussing overcrowding for months, instituting a one-way policy in some stairways at the high school last academic year.
About 1,130 students (sophomores through seniors) last academic year attended the high school, which is designed to hold 1,200. Across the street, 398 freshmen attended , which has an estimated capacity of 450.
While school officials have been pleased with Mark Miller, the architect who has worked on several projects in the district, they plan to open up the process to see what ideas other architects have in regards to expanding or renovating.
"Opening it up is no way a condemnation of Mark Miller," Wakeley said during the Sept. 26 board meeting. "We've had nothing but good with Mark Miller. They didn't build the original high school but they've been with us since then. We invite them to participate if that's the way the board wants to go."
Wakeley added it just makes sense in the current economic climate to seek out other options.
Many District 115 board members agreed.
"I see no harm in getting additional ideas,” said School Board Vice President Lynn Burks. “I think we should have multiple options to look at. Ultimately (Mark Miller) may be the choice."
"I've been extremely happy with the group we've worked with but I also have an interest in what else could be there,” board member Dave Dockstader said.
At this point, project costs are up in the air, Wakeley said.
“We have been told from the state we are in line to get upwards of $7.6 million from a 2003 construction grant,” he said. “We haven’t received that yet, so part of the process is talking to the architects to see if we have to go to the community for funding.”