Seaside’s Planning Commission unanimously gave the go-ahead to the new Seaside School District campus in the Southeast Hills. The $99.7 million campus, approved by voters in November 2016, is expected to begin construction June 1.
“It is a significant milestone for us that now we can proceed with our planning and begin the process of starting construction,” Superintendent Sheila Roley said after the Tuesday, April 17, public hearing, the district’s third after two continuances. “We were able to have some good conversation with the commissioners and resolve any concerns that came up.”
The district came before the commission requesting a conditional use permit to authorize the master plan and development plan for the new campus in accordance with the city’s zoning code.
The permit allows expansion of Seaside Heights Elementary School and establishment of a new middle school and high school facility.
Commissioners considered plans for elementary school play areas, a track and athletic practice field, a secondary access drive, stormwater treatment, expanded parking areas and bus access.
The district also identified areas that could be used for a future water storage reservoir and pump station.
Planning commissioners and school district officials agreed to negotiate a proportional payment when cost details are available.
A memorandum of understanding between the city and the district will detail the district’s financial responsibility for improvements.
Commissioner Bill Carpenter sought a commitment from the school district to repair roads that could be subject to damage during the construction process.
According to a revised construction management plan, more than 11,000 heavy trucks will be used in construction. This represents the damage done by the equivalent of nearly 75 million passenger car trips on Spruce Drive during the 14-month period of heavy construction, Carpenter said.
Repairs to Spruce Drive could come from Seaside’s urban renewal funds, school district attorney Kelly Hossaini said. “We are committed to doing what is necessary in respect to Spruce. The district is not planning to walk away from that. I think the district and staff will be able to work something out.”
Commissioners unanimously voted to grant the permit with the condition that any major changes be brought before the commission or staff.
Major changes identified by the staff or the district will be brought to the Planning Commission for review.
After the meeting, Noelle Idehara of Hoffman Construction Co., said the commission’s decision allows the district to move forward. “We still need to work through our permitting for the site work piece of this, but this will allow us to start moving forward,” she said.
Idehara said construction is expected to begin with erosion control measures.
“You’ll see some fencing going up, then you’ll see mobilization of getting equipment on the site,” she said. “Then you’ll see stump removal and chip grinding for those erosion control measures. Then we start earthmoving.”