Shihadeh Innovation Center Underway | Winchester Star

Shihadeh Innovation

WINCHESTER — Demolition work at the former John Kerr Elementary School at 536 Jefferson St. is expected to begin in mid-October to prepare the building to be renovated into the Emil and Grace Shihadeh Innovation Center, which will house workforce training programs.

Howard Shockey & Sons’ Director of Preconstruction Jon Tingle made the announcement during a luncheon on Thursday at Shenandoah University for stakeholders and supporters of the $13.7 million Winchester Public Schools project. Winchester-based Shockey was hired earlier this year to oversee construction management services for the project. Construction is tentatively scheduled to start in January and wrap up by August, Tingle said.

The 46,400-square-foot career and technical education center is slated to open in the fall of 2020. Design work is being done by Charlottesville-based VMDO Architects.

Winchester Public Schools Career & Technical Education Coordinator Katie Rice said the Innovation Center will give students an experience that mirrors the working world and will equip them with skills they can use to find a job, regardless of whether they go to college. The center will have three academies — Health Sciences, Advanced Technologies and Professional Skills — and each will have simulated job experiences, where students will practice job skills such as conflict resolution, communication and time management.

Kelly Callahan, a principal with VMDO Architects, gave those at the luncheon a virtual tour of what the new Innovation Center will look like. The building includes, among other features, spaces for medical, anatomy, physical therapy, cybersecurity, computer tech, and welding labs, and a cybersecurity room.

Source: Read the original article by Josh Janney in the Winchester Star.