Grimm + Parker Architects has been chosen as a finalist for the Halifax County High School modernization project.

They were one of three architects interviewed by Halifax County School Board last week, and at the end of Monday’s meeting, they unanimously chose the firm as a finalist.

This decision followed a motion by ED-7 trustee Keith McDowell and a second by ED-5 trustee Freddie Edmunds.

Now the board will begin the negotiation phase with Grimm + Parker Architects to see if they would like to move forward with hiring them for the project.

As interim director of secondary instruction Scott Worner explained, during the negotiation phase, board members will outline what exactly they’d like the firm to do, by when they’d like it done and all fees associated with the project.

The school board currently has a budget of $109 million for the project.

Board members also said Monday that they would like to visit some of the schools completed by the architect before they move forward.

Also interviewed last week on the board’s short list of preferred architects were Moseley Architects and RRMM Architects.

Grimm + Parker Architects would be working from their Charlottesville office for this project.

Jim Boyd, a partner with Grimm + Parker Architects and Halifax County native, said on Tuesday, “We’re really excited” following the school board’s decision.

He said as a county native giving the chance to work on the high school project is “really special to him.”

His firm, he said, is made of about 100 people dedicated to architect.

Looking at their portfolio, a little over 300 of their projects have been related to K-12.

Of those, 50 have been high school projects, Boyd said.

Recently, he said, they have replaced Louisa County High School and Westmoreland County High School. Harrisonburg County High School also is under construction with Grimm + Parker.

If they are hired to rebuild Halifax County High School, Boyd said their initial steps would be program confirmation and gathering information about the site.

With program confirmation, he said they would learn more about how Halifax teachers teach and the career technology needed.

“We want to make sure it has all the right features,” Boyd said.

He also said the goal is to make sure that “every grad is prepared for life beyond high school.”

Ashley Conner is the editor for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact her at aconner@gazettevirginian.com

Ashley Hodge is the editor for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact her at ahodge@gazettevirginian.com