Following two years of construction, Hollin Meadows Elementary School in Hybla Valley is putting the final touches on its upgraded and expanded facility.
The science and math focus school now has an additional 20,000 square feet of space — including a new classroom wing, library and an administration addition — and has connected the existing building and its modular to form one complete, enclosed building, according to an official from Fairfax County Public Schools.
Hollin Meadows’ principal, Jon Gates, was particularly happy to relocate all classrooms and offices from trailers to the newly renovated spaces earlier this month.
“For the first time in over 20 years, all of our students are under one roof in one building,” said Gates.
As part of the $23 million renovation, contractors installed a new roof, ceilings, floors, lighting and windows, as well as new electrical, HVAC and fire alarm/sprinkler systems. Many of the new installations and systems have sustainable features, which are in line with the FCPS Get2Green environmental stewardship program.
Other updates include a new stage and mural in the cafeteria, and new furniture in many classrooms. Outside the school, there’s a new school marquee and a reconfigured and repaved parking lot and front driveway. Two new stainless steel rainwater cisterns were added to the outdoor classroom and the soon to be restored Learning Production Garden.
According to Gates, the finishing touches to the school will include the installation of a new playscape, the removal of portable classrooms and restoration of the back field. Next spring, the school plans to reestablish its learning gardens and continue planning for a large-scale production garden. Information on these projects can be found on the Hollin Meadows Partnership for Outdoor Education website.
Last month, school and community volunteers came together for a “Second Sunday in the Garden” event to bring added color to Hollin Meadows’ outdoor education spaces. Volunteers painted picnic tables, chairs, benches, tree stumps, bricks and signs. At Thanksgiving, school children helped harvest and serve the 42 pounds of lettuce they had planted earlier in the school year.