Public weighs in on proposed new DSISD elementary campus

Traffic impacts associated with the proposed site of a fifth Dripping Springs ISD elementary campus were detailed by residents during a series of input meetings in August. That information is expected to be included in a feasibility plan DSISD will craft that could show what’s the best use of the 155-acre site located on Darden Hill Road just east of Sawyer Ranch Road. Four meetings were held the week of Aug. 26 to gather input on plans for the proposed fifth elementary campus, which will be built on district-owned land.

The 155-acre site was purchased by the district in 2010 and is large enough to accommodate a variety of district facilities, potentially including an elementary school, a middle school, a high school, and possibly a satellite transportation facility, according to a district release.

“Where the elementary school is placed on the site will be primarily determined by what location is most beneficial to serve the needs of an elementary school and what location provides the best options for future development of the site,” district officials said.

The location of the elementary school on the site will be determined in the immediate future.

Input gathered at the meetings centered on design elements for the new elementary school. Additional topics of discussion included traffic impacts, improvements to Darden Hill Road, location of the building on the property, how the entire 155 acres might be developed to include other facilities in the future, and features of the building, among other things. DSISD officials said any decisions regarding attendance zone boundary changes would not be made until spring 2020. District leaders expect the new school to be open by 2021-22 school year. The architect also will use input gathered throughout the design planning process for the Walnut Springs Elementary relocation project regarding desired building features and design preferences.

Prior to the community and staff meetings, Corgan Architect, the architect of the new school project, presented potential design concepts for the new structure.

However, after receiving feedback from campus and district staff, a decision was made to step back and gather more general input before moving forward with schematic drawings.

The architect also will use input gathered throughout the design planning process for the Walnut Springs Elementary relocation project regarding desired building features and design preferences.

But DSISD leaders said discussions on the fifth elementary campus has not included any debate on the future of high schools in the district. 

The district plans to continue the community conversation on that topic in 2019. Community feedback received during recent meetings will be incorporated into the feasibility plan for use of the 155-acre site.

Corgan Architect will continue to review potential design schemes for the building considering input that was received, and these will be shared at a future board meeting.

In addition, a design review committee will be formed to provide input to the architect and district leaders.

District officials will meet with county representatives to discuss road traffic and other issues related to infrastructure.

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