This is a partial article. For the full story, check out the upcoming April 12 edition of the Chronicle.
The Page High School Cultural Arts Building could be up and running again by the end of the summer, Page Unified School District superintendent Rob Varner told the Chronicle on Friday.
His statement comes in response to recent rumors speculating that the CAB would be shut down permanently after it sustained extensive structural damage from last weekend’s rainstorms.
“We just want parents and everyone to know that the CAB isn’t going away,” Varner said. “There are some structural issues we’ve needed to address for awhile that came to a head this week, and we’re working on them now.”
Built in 1973, the CAB has served as Page’s go-to venue for music and entertainment, as well as a central hub for the school’s varying dance, band, and theatrical programs. Maintenance staff and administrators for the district have said the building has been in major need of repairs and upgrades for a number of years, but have been delayed due to a chronic lack of capital funding.
PUSD maintenance director Kris Swatski confirmed Friday afternoon that the roof had “essentially failed” following a particularly heavy rainstorm on Monday. Walls, insulation and electrical and mechanical equipment also sustained damage.
Swatski noted the district had recently secured a grant through the Arizona School Facilities Board to begin roof repairs on the CAB. Crews were gearing up to begin those repairs on Monday, but were cut short by the same rainstorm, he said.
The roof is still on track to be fixed, Swatski assured, with a tentative completion date of 30 days. Afterwards, he continued, crews will assess and repair the damages to the interior of the building, which could take up to another two months.
PUSD officials stated making the decision to close the CAB was a hard pill to swallow due to the services it provides for the Page community, but emphasized the building is no longer safe for use in its current condition.
“Safety was our biggest concern,” said PUSD security coordinator Angelo Santana. “I think we at least got lucky that this happened near the end of the school year.
In the meantime, The Lake Powell Concert Association’s lineup of summer shows will migrate to Lake View Primary School. Page's band and orchestra classes have also been relocated.