5 years and $2.2M later, vaunted St. Charles Annex a reality - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

5 years and $2.2M later, vaunted St. Charles Annex a reality

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) -

A Catholic school filled with Lake Charles history, cut the ribbon on a very new addition Sunday.

"So many children are going to be impacted by this, not only the students that are here today, but those in generations to come," said Mayor Randy Roach. 

It's been under construction since 2007, but the Immaculate Conception Cathedral School's Saint Charles Annex is finally finished.

"This is, I know, a great addition to this school. From an educational standpoint, anything you do for education, whether it's public or private, in our community, benefits our children," Roach said. "Our children are the ones who we're really concerned about and want to do for." 

The school took time to dedicate the addition Sunday. It adds the school's first elevator, a fully furnished computer lab and restrooms on every floor, among other features.

"The biggest plus of course is a library," said Principal Dinah Bradford. "We went from a postage stamp, as we say. A portion of our cafeteria was our library. We went to three times that space."

One of the most significant additions to the school are four classrooms. When it was originally built, it did not include pre-k or kindergarten classes, but now everyone has their own space.

The 2.2 million dollar project was funded mostly through donations but also by a $500,000 loan taken out by the church parish, which the school will pay back. But despite the cost, Roach said the growth is the eye opener.

"Growth is about people and about community and about new families and generations coming in," Roach said. "People will be looking for education for their children from a variety of sources." 

The Saint Charles Annex is named after the old Saint Charles School that once stood in the same location as the new addition.

Copyright 2012 KPLC. All rights reserved.

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