GACTC students to build seventh house

Students of the Greater Altoona Career and Technology Center have broken ground to build a house on Harrison Avenue.

It is the seventh house to be built as a result of a partnership between the GACTC and Reliance Bank, which owns the lots where houses have been built.

Just next door to the current construction site, Matt and Kristal Pacifico raise their two young children in a ranch-style house at 1309 Harrison Ave.

Their house was built by GACTC students.

“They did a really good job with it. All the materials used were top quality,” said Matt Pacifico, standing beside his wood front door that was provided to the GACTC by Signature Door Inc.

Pacifico, of the Angelo Pacifico and Sons Bakery family, bought his house last year and was attracted to it by the surrounding neighborhood and school.

GACTC instructors and local construction contractors, including McCloskey Builders, will guide students in building the house next to Pacifico’s.

McCloskey will provide a crane for the roof trusses, and DeGol Carpet is donating materials for the new house, GACTC Executive Director Lanny Ross said. Other companies are providing materials at competitive pricing, he said.

Once completed, the house will be offered for sale during an open house, according to Reliance Bank President Tim Sissler. As with the previous houses, the profit from the sale will be donated to the school.

Participating in the construction of the house are GACTC students from eight high schools as well as adult students taking GACTC building trade courses endorsed by the PA Home Builders Association.

The partnership between GACTC and Reliance Bank began in 1998.

“Since this project began, hundreds of GACTC high school and adult students have participated in the construction of six houses in the city, with the seventh house scheduled for completion at the end of two school years,” Ross said in a statement.

“Reliance Bank’s willingness to partner with the GACTC has given our students an educational and work experience that could not have been achieved by any other means.”

Mirror Staff Writer Russ O’Reilly is at 946-7435.