Shower of praise for new locker rooms

School board members, PTA moms and representatives of Lundgren Management huddled together in the newly renovated girl’s locker room showers at La Cañada High School Monday, first to cut the ribbon and then to formally unveil the updated boys and girls gym locker room facilities.

The renovation project, which came it at just under $740,000, was funded by available bond monies, according to Mike Leininger, La Cañada Unified School District’s assistant superintendent for facilities and operations.

The school board approved funds for the renovation after walking through the gym locker room facilities last year at the invitation of then-LCHS 7 / 8 PTA president Caren Colburn. During her opening remarks at the ceremony, school board President Susan Boyd described having seen beat-up lockers as well as showers that didn’t work or drain properly and that had cracked tiles with moldy grout.

“My son’s in ninth grade and you know, the locker rooms were always something we all knew needed attention,” said Colburn. “I think it was really making the school board members aware of the conditions of the locker room — I don’t think any of them were aware what they looked like, and so I invited a couple of them to take a look.”

Lundgren Management’s crews commenced demolition the Monday following the last day of school and worked consistently over the summer months to rebuild the facilities in time for students, installing new lockers, showers and bathrooms. The update was the first of its kind in 45 years.

“I think the biggest effect is the lighting,” said Matt Driscoll, Lundgren project manager. “These are fluorescent lights built specifically for locker rooms for the moisture and so the steam and humidity won’t start to corrode them. And then also it was requested for the boys, not so much the girls, but the boys, that it have a protective lens so that the boys throwing balls and locks or whatever is not supposed to crack it.”

As the crowd dissipated, some PTA mothers lingered to chat and take in the newness of the girl’s locker room.

“It makes me feel really happy because this is my daughter’s first year here, she’s a seventh grader, and I just think it’s lovely,” said Amanda Toland. “It will make her transition easier.”

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