JERSEY CITY - St. Peter's Prep, the private high school in downtown Jersey City, held a dedication Thursday night for its new multipurpose center, O'Keefe Commons, and for future school facilities.
The O'Keefe Commons, a new cafeteria and event space located on the corner of Van Vorst and Grand streets, is the site of the former St. Peter's Church.
The new center is part of a 12-to-15 year expansion project by the 138-year-old school. The initial phase, with a budget of $10 million, will be highlighted by the floor-to-ceiling conversion of the existing Burke Hall from an all-purpose academic building into a science education center, including the installation of seven new laboratories and additional rooms for science education.
Excited to see the new center as well is Prep alumnus Tom Leane, Class of 1965, a longtime professional planner who consulted on the project.
"I love this school, I went here and my son went here," Leane said. "This school has been here over 135 years and with this project it will be here for another 135."
Joseph Dominguez, a Prep sophomore, also looked forward to the changes at his school.
"They built [the center] really quick, and it came out very nice," Dominguez said. - Ricardo Kaulessar