This newly renovated barracks building will serve as part of the interim elementary school at the Army’s Camp Humphreys in Pyeongtaek, South Korea.

This newly renovated barracks building will serve as part of the interim elementary school at the Army’s Camp Humphreys in Pyeongtaek, South Korea. (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)

PYEONGTAEK, South Korea — The Army is to unveil three renovated buildings Monday that will double the capacity of the interim elementary school at Camp Humphreys.

To provide the Humphreys American Elementary School with the buildings, workers renovated two three-story barracks and a one-story metal structure that had been a snack bar for South Korean soldiers assigned to the U.S. Army.

“This gives us 20 new rooms,” said Warren Tobin, chief of staff with the Department of Defense Dependents Schools-Korea office in Seoul, which operates the school. “It increases (student) capacity from 200 to 400.”

The school currently has 158 students in kindergarten through sixth grade; from 250 to 270 are expected to enroll for the coming school year, Tobin said.

“School opens on the 28th of August and they’re already moving in furniture and hooking up the telephones and everything,” said Greg H. Reiff, resident engineer with the Army Corps of Engineers’ Far East District Pyeongtaek Resident Office at Camp Humphreys.

Work began on the $7.8 million project in September, Rieff said.

Separate future plans call for building two elementary schools, a middle school and a high school at the post. Humphreys is to triple in size by 2008, eventually reaching a population of 45,000, becoming the peninsula’s main U.S. military installation.

But until then, the newly renovated one-story structure is to serve as the school’s administration building. It contains a reception area, principal’s office, counselor’s office, nurse’s suite, a kitchen and a room that can serve as either a cafeteria or an assembly room, Tobin said.

Both three-story buildings have elevators.

The new rooms will serve the school as general classrooms as well as computer labs, a library-media center, art, music, physical education rooms and teacher workrooms, Tobin said.

And the complex also has covered walkways and a hard-surfaced playground area. In addition, the complex will have a second playground that DODDS has added separately.

“We moved three major pieces of playground equipment from the old Pusan American School to this school,” Tobin said.

The Pusan American School at Camp Hialeah in Busan closed in June as part of the overall shutdown of the installation, which is slated for eventual return to South Korean authorities.

Fine Construction Company Ltd. of Seoul has carried out the work at Camp Humphreys under contract with the Corps of Engineers.

Officials are to mark the project’s completion with an 11 a.m. ribbon-cutting ceremony Monday on the school grounds.

Thus far, the school has been housed in a one-story bowling alley converted to 10 classrooms, which it occupied in 2003, and in a six-room temporary classroom added in 2005.

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