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Westmoreland residents view options for new high school

Posted on Wednesday, June 1, 2016 at 8:00 am

Westmoreland resident looks over proposed site plans at Washington and Lee High

Westmoreland resident looks over proposed site plans at Washington and Lee High

Westmoreland County residents heard options for their proposed new High School at a public meeting on May 24 at Washington and Lee High School.

The Westmoreland County School Board held eight town hall meetings in January to get public input, worked with 14 focus groups and developed a website where over 162 students, 47 educators and 68 community members completed surveys, to plan concepts for the new high school.

What they learned is that many of the features that were important to the community were shared by the students and faculty. Athletic facilities topped the list.

The proposed lot fronts 1,223 feet along Kings Highway just north of Opal Lane. Because the property was previously farmland, most of the 103 acre site is relatively flat requiring little grading or tree removal. The highest elevation is 150 feet above sea level along Kings Highway and the lowest elevation is 100 feet along a stream running along the back portion of the property.
The group was shown two concepts they have developed. Both concepts will take advantage of the topography ensuring that the outdoor spaces are split between athletic fields, outdoor classrooms, gardens spaces and trails for walking.

Concept 1 would be completed in two phases and would feature one building near the front for the high school and a second building near the rear of the property for a middle school to be completed in the second phase. Concept 2 completes the project in one phase and combines both the high school and the middle school in one building towards the front of the property.
The two advantages to having the buildings split is the project cost can be spread out and the two groups would have some separation.

Both concepts are designed to address the same advantages. The site will be a multi-use site for both the students and the community. The second consideration is to  utilize the site in a way that maxi…

Read the full story in the June 1 edition.