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Avery Trace Middle School Gym Floor Delayed By Uneven Concrete

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Avery Trace Middle School Gym Floor Delayed By Uneven Concrete

Ever deal with a home improvement project that turns into much more than you expected?

That’s what Putnam County School officials are dealing with in trying to replace the Avery Trace Middle School gym floor. You may remember the floor suffered flood damage during the Christmas freeze. Deputy Schools Director Tim Martin said crews pulled out the old floor at the start of the summer.

“This is one of the only schools in the area that you’ll find that is set down into concrete recessed hardwood floor,” Martin said. “And so we first had issues in the recession working in there and trying to get things level inside there. We’ve now got a level hardwood floor sitting there, but now the concrete up above the hardwood floor is not level, so that’s where we are right now. We’re going to have to level that concrete at the top so that we can put a transition around that will make the floor usable.”

Martin said he’s pointing to Fall Break to have the issue completely solved. He said he’s hopeful of getting it done before then.

Without the use of the gym, Martin said Avery Trace staff, including two Physical Education teachers, are using Algood Elementary and Prescott Elementary to host practices and games. In addition, Martin said there are alternate spaces available at the school to help deal with the issue.

“Obviously not as good as the gym, but they can do certain things in the auditorium,” Martin said. “They’ve got a big stage area in there that they can work on when they’re doing their walking and things like that. They can walk around the auditorium. They’ve got a big commons area up in front of the or right outside the bus loading area. They can use that sometimes, and then they’ve got areas where they can go outside and both in the shade and out according to what they need on a specific day. They’re working really hard to make that work. We obviously want to get them back in the gym as quickly as we can.”

As one of the older buildings in the systems, Martin said he’s not surprised they ran into issues at Avery Trace. Crews are currently removing the red ring of tile that surrounds the hardwood floor. In some places, Martin said, crews are building up the concrete. In others, they are cutting it down. Once the concrete is level, the tile will be replaced.

Insurance will pay for a good part of the floor, but the school system will be responsible for the leveling.

“That was not caused by the water damage,” Martin said. “That was caused by a 50 year old building. So we’re having to pay for all of that part.”

Martin said he met with the coaches and administrators at Avery Trace last week to discuss the situation and the next steps. Martin said the system wants to move forward with upgrading the bleachers and dressing rooms at the school. Martin said the two projects will not be immediate, but are part of the plans.


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