With little discussion, the East Baton Rouge Parish School Board on Thursday advanced projects to rebuild University Terrace Elementary for an estimated $25.2 million and to upgrade athletic and other facilities at Glen Oaks High.
These two are among more than 22 major school construction projects approved by voters in April of 2018 to be built over the next 10 years.
All three parts of a one-cent sales tax renewal for the East Baton Rouge Parish public school system were approved by wide margins in Saturday…
Thursday’s unanimous votes allow the search to begin for an architect for the University Terrace project and allow bids to be prepared for the improvements at Glen Oaks High. The schedule is to hire an architect for University Terrace by December and to start construction at Glen Oaks High by this spring.
Also on Thursday, the board agreed to let Superintendent Warren Drake begin talks with the developers of the Rouzan development about digging a shallow detention pond at the rear of the 14.2-acre Glasgow Middle School campus. The pond is expected to improve drainage in the area but also could double as a soccer field when not full of water. Even if the two sides reach an agreement, the board still has to sign off on the designs of the proposed detention pond before it could be dug.
Glasgow Middle is also part of the 10-year construction plan, known as the Tax Plan, which parish voters approved on April 28, 2018, by renewing a 1-cent sales tax earmarked for education. The sales tax was first approved in 1998 and has been renewed three times since.
Rebuilding Glasgow Middle, estimated at $30.2 million, is not scheduled to start until 2026 at earliest.
University Terrace is slated to merge with Buchanan Elementary, also near the north gates of LSU. Both buildings would be torn down, but only University Terrace would be rebuilt. The Buchanan property would be added to neighboring McKinley High, which is in line for a $35 million remodeling starting in 2023. The new $25.2 million University Terrace is scheduled to be completed by fall 2022.
Glen Oaks High flooded in August 2016 and has already undergone $16 million worth of repairs and improvements. The new work, worth another $7 million, is largely centered around athletics, including work on an auxiliary gym, a training room, locker rooms, a new track and new field lighting, but more items might be added. The improvements are scheduled to be complete by January 2021.
The proposed new detention pond at Glasgow Middle would be dug within the next year.
Sixteen months after voters approved 10 years worth of school construction and improvement projects, the East Baton Rouge Parish School Board …
Charles Landry, a Baton Rouge attorney and business partner in the Rouzan development, told the board on Sept. 5 that the detention pond would be dug on three or four unused acres at the rear of Glasgow Middle, but the dimensions of the pond are subject to negotiation. The developers say they will dig the pond at their expense if the school system grants them a free servitude to the public property. Landry said if the two sides can’t agree, he and his partners plan to dig a pond somewhere on the Rouzan property.
It is part of an effort by the developers to increase drainage protection in the area to a 100-year flood protection level. He said the development is required by the parish to protect against a 10-year flood event but he said he and his partners have already gone beyond the minimum.