Lampton renovations raise accessibility

Published 5:00 am Friday, August 28, 2009

The renovation of Lampton Auditorium is finished and thehistoric building is awaiting final approval of the work before theMississippi School of the Arts can start using it again forofficial business.

The building was undergoing fix-ups to make it compliant withthe Americans with Disabilities Act. MSA Director of Maintenance,Transportation and School Safety Richard Caraway said the changesshould make the building much more friendly and accessible forpeople with handicaps.

“They’ll be able to move about freely, and it will be mucheasier to go to the restroom and through the doors,” he said.

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Workers from Scarbrough Construction have been on the job sincearound March, installing brass handrails on the outside entrance,going up to the stage, and on the balcony. They also installed amen’s and women’s handicapped-accessible restroom and a new set ofstairs on the back of the building, in addition to otherhandicap-friendly improvements, Caraway said.

Scarbrough Construction owner Jan Scarbrough said the projectwas finally finished this last week.

He said MSA officials will need to review the work and approveit, and then it will be theirs to do with what they wish. He saidhe’s pleased with the teamwork on the renovation.

“I think it’s a nice job done by the architect and nice job doneby all,” Scarbrough said.

The project was paid for by a federal ADA grant handled throughthe Mississippi Bureau of Buildings and Grounds. Caraway said thecost of the project will not be final until the project is finishedcompletely.

Scarbrough said in addition to being proud of the job his menhave done, he’s also glad his company won the bid and had theopportunity to do the work in the first place.

“We’re just glad to get a job in these times,” he said.

Caraway said MSA officials are excited to have their buildingback, and are ready to begin using it for academic endeavors.

“We’re going to use it for classrooms, and we’re anxiouslyanticipating the day they turn it back over to us,” he said.