The City School Board had some hope recently that the cost of a new Guntersville High School might come in as low as $20 or $30 million rather than the original $50 million estimate.

But that looks unlikely, according to Schools of Guntersville architect Rob Van Peursem.

School officials had asked someone with the State Department of Education the estimated cost of a new high school to accommodate 600 students. That official responded $20 million.

Van Peurseum followed up with the state department official and asked what he’d based that on.

“His database was from 2003,” Van Peursem said. The lower estimate did not include a gymnasium or an auditorium. It also did not account for construction inflation costs.

Van Peursem said his firm is updating the state department’s construction database for them.

He also clarified exactly what his firm is doing with its current study of Guntersville High School. They are looking at the space requirements for a 600-student high school.

He said they had not yet been engaged to do a study looking at the existing school and whether it could be renovated or a new school should be built.

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