BRATTLEBORO -- There's a 1,300-square-foot, three-bedroom house at 10 Wilson's Woods Road that will be featured in an open house on May 31. But the event isn't a typical open house held to let prospective buyers explore a structure they may soon call home. This one is special.
The showing will be the culmination of five years of work for the three Windham Regional Career Center trade programs that designed, built and wired the house as part of a hands-on curriculum. Students enrolled in WRCC's architecture, construction and electrical courses learned the tricks of their trades during the development of the house that will soon be finished and put on the market.
"It's the celebration of the kids that helped build the thing over the years," said Jim Belville, a real estate agent that is helping sell the house. "We're hoping to get a good turnout and let everyone see this house."
He said the students in WRCC's architecture program designed the house's blueprints using software known as AutoCAD, while the house was built by members of the construction trade program and wired by students studying electrical work. WRCC is down the road from the house.
WRCC Director Michael Burnett told the Reformer the house has two bathrooms, a full basement and an extra room above its one-car garage. He said the asking price is $194,900, though selling the house is not the objective of the open house.
"The main point is to expose the kids and the programs to the community, to highlight these kids' accomplishments," he said, adding that the open house will start at 11 a.m. and end at 3 p.m.
Burnett said the three programs will be represented at the open house and members of the culinary trade program plans to provide refreshments for guests. He said 150 to 175 students participated in the inter-disciplinary effort over the past five years. The idea behind the endeavor was to train students how to apply the knowledge they have learned in the classroom.
Belville told the Reformer this house is the last one of its kind that will be built by WRCC students, as modular homes will be the focus from now on. He said this is a cost-saving measure that will allow students to work on sectional, pre-fabricated buildings and move them onto the site individually once they're completed.
The project house survived its first test on April 2, when a 17-year-old male slammed into one of its corners after losing control of the car he was driving and swerving off the road. Burnett said the damage has been repaired.
The driver, a 17-year-old Dummerston resident, was the sole occupant of the vehicle at the time of the crash. Following an investigation, the operator was cited for negligent operation of a motor vehicle and was ordered to appear in Windham Superior Court: Criminal Division at a later date to answer to the charge. The vehicle was taken away by Brattleboro Towing and Recovery.
Domenic Poli can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 802-254-2311, ext. 277. You can follow him on Twitter @dpoli_reformer.