BILLINGS — Students returning to Billings Central Catholic High School this upcoming school year will notice some big changes that will make their lives easier.
Billings Central is installing an elevator and adding another parking lot for the students.
"We for years have worked to fund raise and do this elevator. It’s been a deficiency that our building has had for a long time, everything from moving equipment up and down, the music equipment is a big one and then just injuries. Kids on crutches, etc. So, we’ve been hoping to do this for a long time. It took awhile to raise the money, but we're happy it's getting done," said Shel Hanser, principal of Billings Central High School.
When the money was raised for the elevator, the school moved ahead with tearing down the long-vacant Sacred Heart building and putting in the parking lot. The idea was to get much of the major construction done at once and while kids were out for summer.
"It made sense this spring to not do all of these as individual projects but to create the mess one time and then put it all together here. And hopefully be finished by the start of school," added Hanser.
The project cost a fair amount, Hanser said, but much of the funds came from donors with a smaller amount coming from grants.
"We’re pretty close to $1.3 or $1.4 million on everything. That’s the elevator, the parking lot, taking the building down, etc.," said Hanser.
Hanser is confident that the additions will add to not only the school but the aesthetic of the building as well.
"I’m really excited. It's going really be a good downtown beautification. This corner will look a lot different here in a month and it’ll be great," said Hanser.