The Union County Board of Education unanimously approved a resolution Tuesday, Nov. 1, asking county commissioners to waive their rights to 14 1/3 acres next Cuthbertson High and Middle schools, where the Union County YMCA wants to build a new facility.
The resolution marks the first official step toward the school system and the YMCA entering an agreement that will allow the YMCA to build on the land, Board of Education Chairman Dean Arp told the audience at Piedmont High School. But Arp said this is just the first step, and the school board has not yet committed itself to the agreement.
The resolution asks county commissioners to waive their right to use the land, now that the school board has decided it doesn’t need the site for an elementary school. Superintendent Dr. Ed Davis said he has talked to County Manager Cindy Coto, who has also spoken with an attorney for the county, and Coto doesn’t expect any problem with the county relinquishing its right to use the land. County commissioners will consider the school board’s request at their Nov. 21 meeting.
Though both sides must work out the details, Arp said the YMCA proposal seems to benefit both parties. The YMCA gets the land and will raise the money to build the new facility. YMCA officials also have committed to compensating the school district for the appraised value of the land.
Years ago, when the school system projected higher student growth rates, the district acquired enough land to build the high school, middle school and two elementary schools. But since then, growth rates have slowed, and district officials don’t expect to need an elementary school there for some time.
Even so, if the YMCA does build its facility, Arp said the school system still has enough land left to build one elementary school.