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Community members question new Burlington High School plans

Published: Apr. 12, 2022 at 11:16 PM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - Burlington residents weighed in Tuesday night with their opinions on five design options for the new high school presented to the school board last week.

Many community members who spoke at the meeting said they felt left out of the process, specifically those living around the Institute Road site.

Burlington High School students have been studying in the former Macy’s downtown since being forced out of their former campus over PCB contamination two years ago. Burlington School Superintendent Tom Flanagan says students should be in a new high school by August of 2025.

“They want light. They want connection to the outdoors, but there are also things in downtown BHS they appreciate like the central communal areas,” Flanagan explained.

While the district works on choosing a concept design for a new school, they’re also fielding questions from community members about everything from zoning to traffic. The school is working with the city to rezone the area. As for traffic, these plans should bring in less than the previous site.

Flanagan says anyone with questions or feedback is encouraged to reach out.

“The old building was not accessible and needed major major work,” he explained. “At this point, I believe a new school is the best option.”

The price tag of all five designs is just shy of $200 million. That doesn’t include the demolition of the old buildings.

The school board is expected to make a decision on a design at their April 27 meeting.

Related Story:

Burlington School Board reviewing 5 high school design options

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