Corbin will soon be losing a storied piece of its basketball history.
Superintendent Dave Cox was slated to ask the Corbin Independent Board of Education during a special meeting Tuesday evening for authorization to seek bids to replace the original gym floor at Edwards Gym.
“We are planning on replacing the gym floor at Edwards Gym. It is just a matter of getting a bid and seeing who comes through with it,” Cox said Tuesday morning.
“We will replace it with exactly what we have in there. That has been down since 1941, it has done all it can do. We have nail heads showing through and a lot of broken boards and several dead spots. That gym floor has never been replaced since the WPA (Work Projects Administration) built that building.”
President Franklin D. Roosevelt created the WPA as part of the New Deal in the 1930s, which came about to help bring the country out of the Great Depression. Numerous schools and other government buildings were built as part of the WPA, which was designed to help improve the country’s infrastructure and create jobs for the unemployed.
Cox doubts that the new gym floor will last as long as the original did.
He admits that replacing the gym floor will be a bittersweet moment for him and others.
Board members have discussed cutting the old gym floor up into squares and selling it to interested parties who want to own a piece of Corbin’s basketball history and have a sentimental connection to the building.
Cox, who coached in that building for about 12 years, said he too would like to own a piece of the gym floor and have it framed.
“We have talked about maybe selling that off as a fundraiser to people, who may have a connection. We will probably do that,” he added.
Edwards Gym was originally the gymnasium for Corbin High School. When the new high school was opened in the 1970s, Edwards Gym and the school building became the Corbin Middle School.
After the new Corbin Middle School opened this year, the Corbin board decided to renovate the building for use as Corbin Traditional School, which will be a new elementary school.
“It (the gym) is basically a classroom. This is where we have our P.E. (Physical Education) classes at, a lot of assemblies and things of that nature. We have to have a good surface in there.”
(Editor’s note: Due to deadline constraints, the News Journal was unable to attend Tuesday night’s school board meeting.)