Richmond breaks ground on first new school in a decade

By Rachel DePompa - bio | email
Posted by Phil Riggan – email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Richmond is moving forward with plans for its first new school in a decade. Ground was broken today in South Richmond for the first of four new facilities.

Mayor Dwight Jones calls it a new day and a new chapter for Richmond. Broad Rock Elementary will be replaced. The first time in 11 years, Richmond is building a new school.

On a windy fall day, Richmond is leaving behind Broad Rock Elementary in favor of... "Opportunity!" yelled Mayor Jones. Then he and city leaders dug their shovels into the ground and threw dirt in the air.

Richmond is building a new $25 million school. "This is more than just a new building, It's a new chapter," said Jones.

"About time for our 8th District. We're so delighted. We're so happy," added Councilwoman Reva Trammell.

Tracey Disher's daughter, Jade, will be a fifth grader when it opens. She says the old building is falling apart. "It's just very old, it's not up to par, the plumbing. I'm hearing from my daughter everyday that the plumbing is a big issue."

The new building will hold up to 650 students. It will be built next to the original school, which will eventually be torn down.

"We're not building monuments. We are on a mission and the mission is to ensure that we have a functional facility that meets the demands of the 21st century," said Jones.

It will have Wi-Fi through out the building and it will also serve as a community center for South Richmond.

"This is a growing community. There are lots of houses that are coming up around here. so we know that the school is going to be pretty much filled," said Richmond Superintendent Yvonne Brandon.

This isn't the only new school coming to Richmond, the city is also building a new Oak Grove Elementary, a new Martin Luther King Middle and its first new high school in 40 years.

Richmond will hold a ground breaking ceremony for Oak Grove Elementary on Friday, November 30, at 10 a.m. The city will break ground on the new Martin Luther King Middle next fall.

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