The Colonial School District is moving forward with plans to build a new middle school on the current Colonial Middle School campus on Belvoir Road in Plymouth Meeting. Construction on the project is expected to begin next summer.
"The administration and School Board considered new construction as well as renovating the existing building which opened in 1968," said Colonial School District Superintendent Dr. Michael Christian. "Due to the significant scope of the necessary renovations as well as increasing student enrollment, the decision was made to build a new school.
"The middle school, which houses grades 6-8, is anticipated to increase in enrollment by approximately 300 students over the next 5-7 years."
Dr. Christian added that the plan includes constructing a new building behind the existing structure. Students will continue to attend the current school until the new one is completed. At that point the current building will be leveled.
At its July Business Meeting, the Colonial Board of School Directors unanimously approved an agreement with KCBA Architects to design plans for the new school. In September, the Board approved parameters of a financing plan that would borrow up to $84 million over the next three years. The Board also unanimously approved the establishment of a separate fund to pay for the project.
Additionally in September, the Board unanimously approved an agreement with D'Huy Engineering to serve as construction manager of the project.
In the coming months, the Board will establish a budget for the project and review and approve final design plans. The project is expected to go out to bid next spring.
"The Colonial community is a desirable place to live," said Dr. Christian. "With the High School renovation and expansion recently completed, the Board and administration are excited to construct a wonderful middle school that will support a robust curriculum for many years."