The province has pledged $25 million to build a new elementary school on Eagle Mountain in Abbotsford.
The announcement was made in a new release issued just after noon on Tuesday.
The school district will also contribute $2.5 million toward a new school for 460 kids from kindergarten to Grade 5. Construction is expected to begin next fall and be completed for September of 2022.
The Abbotsford School District has been requesting money for a new school on Eagle Mountain for years, and land has already been set aside for the project.
“We are very pleased to have a new school coming to the Abbotsford School District,” said Abbotsford School District board chair Stan Petersen in a press release. “Abbotsford has experienced exceptional growth over the last decade, and we require a new school to alleviate high capacity and projected future enrolment in the Eagle Mountain neighbourhood. We look forward to providing students and families with a modern and innovative learning space.”
The school will also include a neighbourhood learning centre with two dedicated daycare rooms, adding to the city’s child care spaces.
In an interview, Petersen said he expects the new school will alleviate pressure on over-capacity schools in the east side of the city.
“The good news is that it’s come to fruition, and that’s great … It’s been in the works for some time. The process is thorough but slow, so when it’s finally announced, it’s pretty exciting,” Petersen said.
“Virtually every one of our east side elementary schools is packed.”
He couldn’t say how many portables are in use, but Petersen said most elementary schools in the east side of Abbotsford are over capacity, not taking into account the use of portables, and he expects the new school will allow the district to reduce its dependency on portables in that area.
Petersen said the last major school space expansion in the city was the partial rebuild of Abbotsford Senior Secondary School in 2012.