Gwinnett schools plan to open 10 new buildings, 4 additions

"As far as I know, we can move into them next week," school superintendent J. Alvin Wilbanks said Thursday evening at the district's monthly board of education meeting.

When the doors open, the district will have 123 educational facilities, including 19 high schools, 24 middle schools and 72 elementary schools.

The openings includes nine new schools and one replacement facility, J.G. Dyer Elementary in Dacula.

With the new buildings and renovation work at other facilities this summer, the district will have 698 additional classrooms for its nearly 160,000 students. The buildings alone account for $237 million in construction costs funded through the districts special purpose sales tax.

Another nine facilities are scheduled to open next year.

Jim Steele, head of facilities and operations for the district, told board members Gwinnett receives high marks for building efficiency. He said Gwinnett's elementary school construction averages about $92.77 per square foot, 33 percent less than the metro Atlanta average of $120.71.

Meanwhile, the district is sponsoring open houses at the schools to acquaint students and parents with the facilities. Open houses are:

July 19: Mountain View High School, 2351 Sunny Hill Road, Lawrenceville, 1 to 3 p.m.; Bay Creek Middle School, 821 Cooper Road, Grayson 1 to 3 p.m.; Starling Elementary School, 1725 Grayson Highway, Grayson, 1 to 3 p.m.; Woodward Mill Elementary School, 2020 Buford Drive, Lawrenceville, 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.; Couch Middle School, 1777 Grayson Highway, Grayson, 2 to 4 p.m.; Twin Rivers Middle School, 2300 Braselton Highway, Buford, 2 to 4 p.m.; J.G. Dyer Elementary School, 1707 Hurricane Shoals Road, Dacula, 2:30 to 4:30 p.m.

July 25: Archer High School, 2255 New Hope Road, Lawrenceville, 1 to 4 p.m.

July 26: North Gwinnett Middle School, 170 Peachtree Industrial Boulevard, Sugar Hill, 1 to 3 p.m.; White Oak Elementary School, 6442 Suwanee Dam Road, Buford, 2 to 4 p.m.

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