New South Albany HS cafeteria almost finished one year after ars - KPTV - FOX 12

New South Albany HS cafeteria almost finished one year after arson fire

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Work on South Albany High School's new cafeteria is scheduled to be finished in two months. Work on South Albany High School's new cafeteria is scheduled to be finished in two months.
Administrators say it’s a major upgrade from the previous building. Administrators say it’s a major upgrade from the previous building.
Zachary Burghart was convicted of arson for the April 2015 fire at Albany High School.  (Air 12 file image) Zachary Burghart was convicted of arson for the April 2015 fire at Albany High School. (Air 12 file image)
ALBANY, OR (KPTV) -

It’s been one year since the cafeteria at South Albany High School burned to the ground, destroyed at the hands of an arsonist. But now, a brand new building is almost finished.

On Friday, district leaders took FOX 12 on a tour of the new facility. It’s similar in size, but administrators say it’s a major upgrade from the previous building.

They’re especially excited about a commons area the school didn’t have before.
 
“There are spaces there for students to have informal work groups and meetings with their teachers,” said district leader Jim Haggart. “It will also be available for members of the community – a very, very nice place.”
 
On April 1, 2015, Zachary Burghart set fire to the building and within minutes, massive flames and smoke could be seen for miles. Burghart was convicted of arson and is now serving time in prison.
 
Kitchen manager Laurie Robinson was devastated when her work space was destroyed. The South Albany cafeteria not only served high school students, but the staff prepared thousands of meals for the entire district.

Since the fire, Robinson’s staff has been feeding students out of a temporary trailer on campus. But as she toured the new building wearing a hard hat, Robinson said she can’t wait to move into her new home base.
 
“It’s amazing. That’s all I can say. It’s absolutely amazing. This is going to be a very impressive building," she said. 
 
The new building, which will also host the band and choir rooms, will be finished in about two months. District officials said it will be ready for the new school year in September.

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