Maui Waena getting new classroom building

Groundbreaking for a new two-story, eight-classroom building needed to alleviate overcrowding at Maui Waena Intermediate School is expected within a month for a project originally scheduled for completion in 2007, according to Kahului state Rep. Justin Woodson.

F&H Construction is the general contractor for the $5.1 million project.

“I am very pleased to report that Raymond L’Heureux, Department of Education assistant superintendent for school facilities and support services, recently confirmed that the Maui Waena eight-classroom expansion project will now be moving forward,” Woodson said in an announcement.

“Groundbreaking for this project should begin very shortly, but given the project’s history, I will continue to closely monitor the process until ground is actually broken,” he said. “In the meantime, let me assure the community that the funds for this project have been encumbered and will not lapse.”

On Sept. 25, L’Heureux told nearly 100 students, teachers and residents attending a meeting of the Friends of Maui Waena Intermediate School that the classroom project was expected to begin by the end of last year. During the meeting, he blamed “malfeasance, confusion, lack of process and no oversight” for the delays in getting construction underway.

Maui Waena is the island’s largest intermediate school with an enrollment of more than 1,000 students.

Building plans call for three science classrooms, three general education classrooms, a multipurpose room and a computer resource center.