Troy board OKs land buy as part of plan for new schools

Forest Elementary School in Troy. JAMES RIDER/STAFF

Combined ShapeCaption
Forest Elementary School in Troy. JAMES RIDER/STAFF

Board of education members unanimously approved the purchase of land that leaders said could result in new neighborhood elementary schools for Troy.

The vote Tuesday authorized Superintendent Chris Piper and Treasurer Jeff Price to purchase 32 acres of land on the south side of the school district.

The land purchase for $475,000 will allow the district to move forward with its plan to build four new neighborhood elementary schools. The plan, pending voter approval, includes three PreK-4 buildings: one at the new site near the corner of Swailes and South County Road 25-A, one on the current site of Cookson Elementary School and one near the current Concord Elementary School site. A new 5-6 building would be located at the current Hook Elementary School site.

NOVEMBER: Troy schools seek levy to replace elementaries

Two years ago Troy voters rejected, by a 60-40 ratio, a bond issue that would have paid for construction of two new large new elementary schools west of I-75, as well as upgrades to the high school.

School Board President Doug Trostle said that, since that vote, the board has reached out to people more to try and get a better idea of what people would like to see as well as possible concerns.

“We’re told we have a better plan this time,” Trostle said. “It’s more suitable for what they were asking for, and I think it’s going to be exciting to have a building located on the south side of the district.”

“A lot of the development in the Troy City Schools has been to our south side of our district,” Trostle said. “We’ve never had a building located in that area.”

JANUARY: Troy schools drop plan to buy land off Ohio 55

One of the reasons the district says it needs the new schools is Troy’s seven existing elementary schools — Concord, Cookson, Forest, Heywood, Hook, Kyle and Van Cleve — are 77 years old on average, according to district officials. Concord and Van Cleve are 100 and 105 years old.

“It means we can run more efficiently in our district,” Piper said. “We’re spending a lot of our dollars on maintenance for old buildings. Dollars that we’re having to divert from instruction to maintain old buildings.”

“Educationally it’s a leap forward. Our new buildings will be much more conducive to learning, much safer for our students, much more adaptable for technology needs.”

The Troy City Schools will place a $98.7 million bond issue on the March 17 ballot. It is combined with a 0.5-mill levy for ongoing maintenance in a single vote. That combined millage (7.04) would cost the owner of a $100,000 home about $249 per year.

2018 STORY: Much work to do before trying school bond again

Troy City Schools officials said as part of their partnership with the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission, the district would eventually receive a $31.8 million reimbursement from the state for its share of the project. Piper said Troy is expected to become eligible for that money in 3-8 years.

About the Author