At long last, the Barth Athletics Complex is complete and ready — on schedule — for the 2019-20 school year.
The finishing touches were being applied this week — fire alarm testing, restoration of the tennis courts and furniture delivery among them — in preparation for the formal ribbon-cutting ceremony scheduled at 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 10. San Marino schools will open on the Wednesday after that.
“We’ll be ready to go on the 14th,” said Gerald Schober, the project manager for the Barth complex.
Breaking ground a little more than two years ago with the demolition of Huntington Middle School’s old gym, the work on the new facility has gone with minimal hitches since. The district planned from the get-go to have the facility ready for the upcoming school year and there were only a handful of change orders throughout the process.
Schober said projects of this scale are completed as scheduled “less often than they should,” and lauded construction crews in getting this work completed as asked.
The two-story facility, which looms over the south end of the HMS parking lot just west of the tennis courts, includes a full-size, CIF-regulation gym in addition to two media classrooms, a fitness room, team rooms for boys’ and girls’ sports and a multipurpose room. The complex will be used for HMS classes and athletics, and portions of the facility will be available for community groups to rent as well.
The facility is named for residents Andy and Avery Barth, who made the initial donation of $3.5 million, which was followed up with a $2 million commitment to debt service payments after a certain date. Other donations toward the project include $500,000 from Tim and Lisa Sloan; $250,000 from the Barger family; $100,000 from Calvin Lo and Wendy Hsu; $100,000 from Paul and Alice Su; and $50,000 from Aaron and Valerie Weiss, via the San Marino Motor Classic and Rotary Club of San Marino.
The district committed more than $3.4 million of its own dollars toward the project, with another $2.2 million in state funding; more than $6.5 million in loans were borrowed for the project through a certificate of participation agreement the board of education voted on in 2017.
Donors recently toured the facility ahead of completion, and the Rotary Club will embark on a sneak peek of the facility for its Thursday, Aug. 8, meeting. There will be a VIP reception at the complex at 3 p.m. ahead of the Saturday, Aug. 10, event; the ribbon-cutting itself is open to all and is scheduled to run through 6 p.m.
HMS students also will have a guided tour of the Barth Athletics Complex that day, giving them a preview of where they’ll be going for gym class or team practice when their school year starts the following week.