Work set to begin on latest Olentangy school


Olentangy Local Schools has announced construction on the district’s 17th elementary school is set to begin on Monday, April 3.

The site of the new elementary school, which has not yet been named, will be located on approximately 20 acres on the southwest corner of Piatt and Peachblow roads in Berlin Township. A groundbreaking ceremony was scheduled to be held at the site on Thursday but was canceled due to inclement weather.

Robertson Construction Services has been hired by the district to serve as the construction manager for the project. The 83,000-square-foot building is scheduled to open ahead of the 2024-25 school year and will be similar in design to the district’s other elementary schools, with the same classroom footprint as the Shale Meadows Elementary building that opened in 2021.

Construction of the new elementary school will cost the district approximately $31.6 million, which was made possible by the approval of a combined $134.7 million bond issue, a 0.5-mill permanent improvement levy, and a 7.4-mill operating levy that were all passed by voters on the March 17, 2020, primary ballot.

The bond issue has previously funded the construction of Shale Meadows, as well as Berlin Middle School, which is scheduled to open this fall for the 2023-24 school year.

“During my time as superintendent, we have broken ground on four schools — Berlin High School, Berlin Middle School, Shale Meadows Elementary, and now elementary school 17 — which have changed the landscape in the northeast region of our district,” said Olentangy Schools Superintendent Mark Raiff said in a press release. “These schools are not only needed to address the growth in that immediate area but have been imperative to relieving overcrowding at all school levels across our district. The immense support of our community to fund these school buildings allows our staff to continue to facilitate maximum learning for every student.”

The release went on to state, “The new schools address Olentangy’s continued enrollment growth. Since opening Shale Meadows Elementary School in 2021, the district’s preschool-fifth-grade enrollment has grown by over 500 students. The district has been forced to close enrollment at three elementary schools this school year and redistrict students for the 2023-2024 school year to alleviate overcrowding. Current enrollment forecasts indicate the district will have around 12,841 elementary students by the 2032-2033 school year.”

Reach Dillon Davis at 740-413-0904. Follow him on Twitter @DillonDavis56.

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