Alabaster BOE approves final clearing of new high school land

The site for Alabaster's new high school has been cleared off, and construction likely will begin on the project over the next several months. (File)

The site for Alabaster’s new high school has been cleared off, and construction likely will begin on the project over the next several months. (File)

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

ALABASTER – Construction crews soon will be ready to begin work on Alabaster’s new high school after the city’s Board of Education approved the final clearing for the property during an April 13 meeting.

The School Board voted unanimously to approve a $597,038 bid from W.S. Newell and Sons to complete the final clearing, which will remove stones and debris to make way for the building project and water line relocation for the new high school.

The Parnell timberland company finished clearing trees off the land in mid-March.

The Alabaster School Board voted in May 2014 to purchase more than 300 acres of currently vacant property between Thompson and Kent Dairy roads to house a 365,000-square-foot new high school and athletic facilities.

The school system has budgeted $84.5 million for the new high school and its athletic facilities, and is being funded using a portion of the $120 million in bonds the School Board approved in September. The high school will house at least 2,000 students, Alabaster School Superintendent Dr. Wayne Vickers said previously.

The about 384,000-square-foot high school likely will be the second-largest in Alabama behind Enterprise High School, will include a 1,250-seat theater, three gyms including a 2,000-seat main arena, a golf practice facility, a regulation track and more.

The high school construction project likely will be bid out early this summer, and the athletic complex project likely will be bid out in late summer.

The new high school is scheduled to open in the fall of 2017.