Horizon Science Academy will put the former swimming pool area on the campus to use, Varner said.
“January marks the beginning of an exciting chapter, Horizon Science Academy of Lorain proudly started working on a transformative construction project,” she said. “The area, formerly the swimming pool for Lorain Catholic, is set to undergo a remarkable metamorphosis into a new half gym and cafeteria area, a dynamic addition that promises to elevate our school experience.”
Currently, the school serves more than 800 students.
Selahaddin Arifoglu, assistant principal of operations at Horizon, said the renovation will open up a new area in the building and serve a variety of purposes for students.
“That area, we’re going to make it half cafeteria and half gym, and it will also serve as an event space,” Arifoglu said. “We are also adding three classrooms.”
The pool area has been out of commission since the 1990s, when Lorain Catholic still was in operation.
When Horizon took over in 2009, crews sectioned off that area of the building and later drew up long-term plans for how it might be used, Varner said.
The pool space is massive, she said.
“The area is huge,” Varner said. “The pool, I believe, when it was still a thing, it was an Olympic-sized swimming pool.
“So, that area is giant, but the pool hasn’t been commissioned since the ’90s, when (Lorain Catholic) was still using it as their recreation center.”
Horizon’s student body has grown exponentially since it opened, Varner said.
Originally, the school started with about 100 students.
In addition to adding an event center, the renovation will add much-needed classroom space and other facilities for students, Varner said.
“Having the (extra) space is just going to offer a bigger area for the kids,” she said. “It’s just going to enhance our education by having more opportunities for kids to use.
“We already have a gym, so this will be another gym. We’re just upgrading the space for education,and offering them some more things.”
According to Arifoglu, the construction phase of the project has started.
The goal is that the project is finished by the beginning of the 2024-25 school year, he said.