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School board updates property acquisition for sixth elementary school


By Alex Carder and Faith Zantua, Staff Reporter and Co-Copy Editor

On Wednesday, the TESD school board held a special meeting to discuss the possibility of a new elementary school and to present the due diligence process for the site at 1200 West Swedesford Road, in which experts conducted surveys to deduce the viability of having an elementary school at the property.

The board authorized district Superintendent Dr. Richard Gusick to extend the due diligence process past its current deadline of Monday, March 18 at 5 p.m. or to terminate the Agreement of Sale if the project team working for the district does not meet the necessary due diligence conditions in time.

The school district originally entered an Agreement of Sale regarding the Swedesford property on Jan. 17 and reserved a 60-day due diligence period.

Certain conditions such as lease relocation agreements must be met by the end of the due diligence period in order to close the process. In the event that these conditions are not met, the board has given Gusick the authority to extend the agreement if the conditions can be achieved at a later date or to terminate it if the conditions cannot be achieved.

At the meeting, project designers presented the project team’s efforts during the due diligence process so far. The presentation included pictures of the current property and office building, the condition of the site, proposed architectural plans for the location, a rough timeline for the project and an estimated budget.

Site designs include maintaining the three-floor structure of the building and holding kindergarten and first grade classes on the first floor, second grade classes on the second floor and third and fourth grade classes on the third floor. The team also proposed filling the site’s current basin for stormwater management purposes, installing a new HVAC system and building a “gymnatorian”: a combination of a gymnasium and meeting space.

The schedule accounted for the due diligence process ending on Monday, March 18, with construction beginning on Nov. 21, 2025. The estimated project budget is over $69 million, including the site’s purchase price.

If the due diligence period closes and the district moves forward with the project, it will enter the schematic design phase.

3/13/24 Special School Board Meeting

Alex Carder can be reached at [email protected].

Faith Zantua can be reached at [email protected].

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About the Contributors
Alex Carder
Alex Carder, Staff Reporter
Alex Carder is a sophomore and Staff Reporter for The Spoke. He loves both Conestoga and Philadelphia sports. He also played baseball for the Conestoga freshman baseball team last year.
Faith Zantua
Faith Zantua, Co-News Editor
Faith Zantua is a sophomore and the Co-Copy Editor of The Spoke. As Co-Copy Editor, she edits print and web articles, ensuring that they follow the Associated Press' guidelines. She covers local events in the community, with an emphasis on education and policy-related topics. Outside of the newsroom, she researches other topics as part of Conestoga's National History Day Club and serves as a committee chair of the Mini-THON Planning Committee 2024.