Design of a new Athens-Boonesboro Road elementary school could begin immediately, and the building could open in fall 2019 if the Fayette school board approves.
The $21.7 million school for 650 students, at 4701 Athens-Boonesboro Road, would be near Edythe J. Hayes Middle School. The Athens-Chilesburg area has seen rapid growth since 2015, district pupil personnel director Steve Hill has said.
The school board is set to take a final vote on Feb. 27 on a design consultant contract with EOP Architects. Board members did not ask questions about the contract at Monday's planning meeting.
On Jan. 23, four architectural firms were interviewed as potential design consultants for the project. The committee agreed to recommend EOP Architects. Once the selection is approved by the board, design will start immediately, and construction would begin in April 2018. The school would be ready to open for the 2019-20 school year, board documents said. The building would be 73,000 square feet.
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In 2016, the board approved paying Centenary United Methodist Church $2.7 million for 39 acres next to Edythe J. Hayes Middle School for the new elementary school, Myron Thompson, senior operations and support director, previously said.
A new high school is set to open this fall on Winchester Road. District officials have been looking for several years for a site for a new middle school near Squires Road.
In other action, the school board approved a 30-plus page strategic plan to guide the district over the next four years.
An in-depth plan is behind some simple concepts. As part of the strategic plan, the district will provide excellent student opportunities, excellent staff, excellent schools, excellent supports and excellent relationships.