A 12-acre plot of land within the Santa Ranch development is being eyed by Hollister School District officials as the site of a new multi-million dollar elementary/middle school.
District officials said this week they are in negotiations for the site of a new campus they say will be needed to accommodate Hollister’s population growth.
Supt. Lisa Andrew said the 12 acres, surrounded by new Anderson Homes, were set aside by developers for the purpose of building a school. Although the district has not acquired the land, it has already put out bids to select a design-build construction firm.
“We’re shooting for August 2020 to open the school,” Andrew noted. “To accomplish that, we would need to break ground this August-September.”
The incoming bids range between $48 to $78 million, according to Andrew.
While Measure V, approved by voters in November 2016, will account for $36 million of that building cost, Hollister school leaders are counting on an additional $26 million in matching funds from the state’s Proposition 51, as well as revenues from developer fees to cover the rest.
Measure V was outlined “to help fund the construction of a new 900-plus student elementary/middle school to keep class sizes optimal and prevent overcrowding,” according to the school district’s fact sheet. An Independent Citizens Bond Oversight Committee was also included in Measure V’s ballot measure.
Statewide voters approved Prop 51, the Kindergarten through Community College Public Education Facilities Bond Act, in November 2016. The measure provides $9 billion of facility funding to California public schools.
The 12-acre property is on Fairview Road at the end of Sunnyslope and will be the ninth elementary school site (12th primary school program) in the district’s cache of schools. Andrew said those existing schools are either at or nearing capacity, “so as a district we are nearing capacity.” The Hollister district currently serves about 5,500 students.
“It’s an ugly piece of land, but we’re going to make it pretty,” added HSD Board President Patricia Moore, who credited local residents for making the new school project possible with the passing of Measure V. “The people of Hollister have been very supportive of schools. They see the value of education.”
Along with helping to finance a new school, the Prop 51 funds would also go to improve student nutrition, improve technology for all students, provide access for people with disabilities at all sites, increase school safety and security at all sites and provide energy efficiency at all school sites, according to district staff.
Anderson Homes has named the new neighborhood home of the school Cloverfield at Santana Ranch, which “offers sweeping views in every direction extending to Santa Clara Valley.”
It is a cluster of three- and four- bedroom homes with prices starting from $545,900, according to Anderson-homes.com.