UVALDE, Texas — Community input on the new Uvalde elementary school will begin this month, with the goal of opening the doors of the new campus in October 2024.
The current Robb Elementary, where 19 children and 2 teachers were killed in a mass shooting spree by a Uvalde high school dropout last May, is expected to be demolished and replaced with a memorial park. In June, grocery retailer H-E-B and the Butt family committed $10 million to build a new elementary school, which will serve grades 2 through 4.
What You Need To Know
- A new elementary school in Uvalde will replace Robb Elementary
- Public input with an advisory group begins this month and goes through mid-November
- Construction of the building is scheduled to start next June
- Robb Elementary will be demolished and replaced with a memorial park
Huckabee, the architecture firm picked in August to design the campus, made its initial presentation at Monday night’s board meeting. Jeff Rodriguez and Kerri Brady presented the public input timeline, discussed the pros and cons of the three potential sites, and set the dates for all phases of the construction project through completion.
The programming and conceptual design with the community advisory committee will happen over the next eight weeks. The community advisory committee, which will be made up of school personnel, parents, and community members, will have five meetings.
The first couple of meetings will focus on how the instructional area and safety concerns will be addressed, Brady told the board. By the first meeting in October, Huckabee will have three concepts for the advisory committee to review. That will be followed by a three-day community feedback session. The conceptual design will be presented to the school board in November.
Uvalde CISD owns seven pieces of land across the district; three are being seriously considered for the new elementary campus site. The property nearest to Robb Elementary, at County Road 106 at South Getty, is in a good location but lacks utility connections, Brady said. It’s outside the city limits and next to a current dove hunting site.
A second location, at the intersection of Studer and North Camp streets, is on the site of Morales Junior High and Uvalde High School. This site has good access from all sides, would be convenient for bus routes and has access to utilities, Brady said. The site, however, is narrow and small and would require east-west orientation. It also would limit expansion of current campuses if there was a need for additional fields or facilities.
The third location is next to Dalton Elementary School, with access along Leona Street. This would make sense in terms of continuity of grades and the synergy that would come with potential shared activities. This site, too, would be efficient for bus routes. The site does come with only one tree and access only through the Dalton Elementary site.
Recommendations on the preferred site and conceptual design will be brought to the Uvalde CISD board in November for a vote.
“With that approval, then we would start working on schematic design and the design development phase. Those two will be combined,” Rodriguez said. “So, we would work mid-November through mid-March.”
Huckabee would then return to present the floor plans for the building, as well as the site layout, and how the play facilities would be placed on the site. Once the board approves that, Huckabee would prepare the construction documents and go out for contractor bids.
Bids should be awarded by mid-June 2023, with the goal of 15 months of construction, Rodriguez said. That would put the opening of the campus in mid-October 2024.