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EAST MOLINE — More than a year after its announcement, the planned $9.5 million Student Life Center at United Township High School is nearing completion.

The sprawling additions to UTHS will be ready for use by August, said Jay Morrow, Superintendent of United Township High School District #30. Some of the additions will be ready as early as June.

Construction began last year on the second major project undertaken at the East Moline school since UTHS was built, in 1960. The last addition came in 1990, after the district closed its North Campus.

The Dispatch-Argus toured the active construction site on Friday. The big-ticket additions include a new library and media center, which will be a hub for books and technology. Plans for the old library space have not been finalized, Morrow said.

The addition will also include a new front entrance with modern security features. Mathew Wright, UTHS principal, said that daily school traffic will return to the front, along Frontage Road, in August. During construction, traffic has been temporarily rerouted.

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The addition will also feature a realignment of offices for high school administrators, counselors, and other faculty. Current offices are disparate, but the new office corridors will be more of a central “one-stop shop.”

One of the most spacious additions is a multi-purpose commons area adjoining the cafeteria. Wright said that the space will add a capacity of about 300 to the roughly 600-person cafeteria, a 50 percent increase.

Funding for the project comes from a 1-cent sales tax approved in 2016 for Rock Island County schools. The school’s address is 1275 Avenue of the Cities.

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