School Board Reviews Building Plans

School Board Reviews Building Plans

July 17-23, 2002

No one will be left standing when the School Board holds its bimonthly meetings in the new administrative office in 2004.

A partitioned room will be expanded to fit the expected turnout, though that’s not the case at the North Street Administrative Office in Leesburg where some of the meetings are “standing room only,” as described by School Board member Thomas Reed (At Large).

“We are trying to get ourselves organized in an efficient manner,” said Reed about the proposed 210,000-square-foot building that will house the Public Schools Administrative Office. “It’s efficient, but it’s not opulent. It’s professional, but it’s not palatial.”

The new administrative office will sit on a 13.4-acre site in the Broadlands subdivision in an area central to the population base, though Leesburg is central geographically, said School Board member Joseph Vogric (Dulles). The site is located south of the Dulles Greenway between Belmont Ridge Road and Claiborne Parkway.

School Board members viewed the preliminary design plans for the building’s interior at the July 9 board meeting.

“The new layout is totally different, built exclusively for office use,” said Wayde Byard, school press officer.

THE NORTH STREET facility was converted from an old high school to house some of the administration offices, including personnel, instruction, planning and support services, and business and financial services. Pupil and support services are currently housed in the Douglass Support Facility, while Union Street, the former School Board office, is used for media services and the old Ashburn School, now the Staff Training Center, houses technical support services.

“It brings everyone under one roof,” Vogric said, adding that the floor plan combines functional areas, allowing employees who work closely together to be able to communicate and exchange information easier. The boardroom will have partitions for three sections, allowing the room to be used for other functions when not in use, such as for conferences, workshops and meetings.

About 9,500-square feet of the building will not be used at first, since the building is designed to accommodate the administrative staff for the next 10 years. Hatrick met with county staff last week about possible uses of the space, such as for offices or document preparation for county staff traveling to the eastern end of the county.

“Inspectors could go out and come back to file reports for eastern Loudoun visits without having to come back to Leesburg,” Reed said.

Staff worked with Hayes Large Architects on developing the floor plans for the past several months. The School Board will vote on the plans at the Aug. 13 meeting.

IN OTHER BUSINESS, the School Board approved the name for a new elementary school to be located in the Belmont Greene Subdivision in Ashburn. ES-10 will be named Belmont Station Elementary School and will open in fall 2003. The school is proposed for a 15-acre site near Route 650 and Portsmouth Boulevard that is still under contract.

The board also approved the names for two schools located on the O’Connor property in Leesburg, including Frances Hazel Reid Elementary School and Smart’s Mill Middle School that will serve the area north of Leesburg.

The board awarded a $28.833 million contract to Tucon Construction Corporation in Dulles for construction of both Leesburg area schools. The schools will be located on a 66.5-acre site between Business Route 15 and the Route 15 Bypass north of Leesburg.

The groundbreaking for the two schools is scheduled this summer, with the elementary school opening in 2003 and the middle school in 2004.