High School Campus Project

High School Rendering 16X9_opt
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School Bond Referendum Passes


The school bond referendum passed on November 7 with 63.6 percent of voters authorizing the issuance of up to $120 million in bonds to pay for a new high school. The next steps in the projects include the schools planning for design and the City government marketing up to 10 acres of campus for economic development to help pay for the new school.

Both the school design and an economic development agreement are scheduled to be completed in spring 2019. The design process will include multiple opportunities for public input and comment. The schedule currently calls for the new high school to begin construction in 2019, and open in summer 2021. The commercial development on up to 10 acres of the campus would commence after the new school is open.

Past Events and Meetings

Project History


Over the past four years, the City Council and School Board have taken an extensive look at the possibilities, considering options for a new school that include full gut renovation and addition; partial renovation and addition; phased building over 10 years; and new building.

(Related: Read the detailed history of the high school in Superintendent Peter Noonan's memo. You can also find archived materials from the past four years as well as videos of meetings throughout the process.)

Feasibility Studies


Falls Church City Public Schools conducted a facilities feasibility study that concluded the best option was a five-story high school aside 10 acres of commercial development.

The City of Falls Church government conducted an economic feasibility study where consultants estimated that as much as $45 million could be earned by the City’s long-term lease or sale of the 10 acres.

Because of limited space on the site, the new school would need to be built before the existing building can be taken down for commercial development. As a result, the City will need to issue bonds for the full cost of the school before the commercial development revenue from the sale or lease of the property is available.

Timelines


This document shows the anticipated schedule for the projects if the November 2017 referendum passes:

School Construction Timeline
  • December 2017 through March 2019: High school design and permitting
  • March 2019: City issues first half of construction bonds, with remainder of bonds sold in 2020
  • Spring 2019 – Summer 2021: Construction of the high school
  • September 2021: New high school opens
Economic Development Timeline
The City's consultants Alvarez & Marsal detail a proposed strategic roadmap for marketing the 10 acres for commercial development. The summary timeline is as follows:

  • December 2017 through February 2019: Final planning, zoning, and marketing of 10 acres of campus property for commercial development
  • February 2019: City enters into master development agreement for the lease or sale of 10 acres of campus property, prior to the issuance of bonds to finance the construction of the school
  • Spring 2019 through Summer 2021: City considers land approvals and site plan approvals for commercial development
  • September 2021: Developer takes possession of 10 acres of campus land for commercial development and the existing high school is demolished

More Information, Documents & Videos