Stay in the know! Sign up to get Fauquier County news updates delivered to your inbox.
Advertise on Fauquier Now!
FauquierNow.com
Do you plan to make a donation during the “Give Piedmont Local” fundraising blitz Tuesday, May 2? Vote!
HOME OBITUARIES NEWS HOME & GARDEN OPINIONS BUSINESS STYLE CALENDAR CLASSIFIEDS
Free classifieds! Members can also post calendar events, news, opinions and more ... all for free! Register now!
Login · Forgot Your Password?
February 28, 2017 · OPINION

Middle school project costs higher than elsewhere

File Photo/Cassandra Brown
The proposal would build a $55-million structure to replace Taylor and Warrenton middle schools.
By Thomas H. Valk, M.D.
Marshall

In Fauquier County, we have a middle school problem. Both Warrenton and Taylor middle schools are out-of-date and deteriorating. Neither school has been remodeled since 1981 and, taken together, they have a combined age of 145 years.

We agree: It is time for a solution.

But at what cost to the taxpayers? Based upon their meeting of last week, it appears that the school board and the board of supervisors can’t agree.

The school board has requested $55.3 million dollars or $348.23 per square foot. However, as detailed below, our neighbors in Frederick, Warren and Loudoun counties have undertaken the task of building new middle schools within the past few years, at between 22 and 25 percent less cost per square foot!

We don’t have a good answer to the cost question. Unfortunately, an examination of the draft architect plans for the new middle school raises more questions than it answers.

Taxpayers in Fauquier County deserve to know why our new middle school is so much more expensive than those of our neighbors to both the east and west on the Interstate 66 corridor. We think the school board should be providing answers well before a bond referendum is presented to the voters of our County.

Fauquier County
Proposed middle school
Total cost: $55.3 Million
Square feet: 158,804
Price/square foot: $348.23
Seats: 1,000
Opening: To be determined

Loudoun County
Brambleton Middle School
Total cost: $50.4 Million
Square feet: 184,593
Price/square foot: $273.03
Seats: 1,350
Opening: Fall 2017

Warren County
Warren County Middle School
Total cost: $40.5 Million
Square feet: 154,800
Price/square foot: $261.63
Seats: 800
Opening: Fall 2017

Frederick County
Frederick County Middle School
Total cost: $49.5 Million
Square feet: 180,000
Price/square foot: $275.00
Seats: 900
Opening: Fall 2016

The writer serves as chairman of the Fauquier Taxpayers Association.

Notes
Cost per square foot was calculated by dividing the total cost of the school (both hard and soft cost) by the published square footage.

Please, note the Loudoun, Frederick and Warren County numbers are not adjusted for inflation.
Member comments
To comment, please log in or register.
Facebook comments
Enter your email address above to begin receiving
news updates from FauquierNow.com via email.
Thursday, April 27
Federal agency standardizes procedure, issuing warrant with every local request to detain a criminal suspect
Thursday, April 27
Pennsylvania-based company owner estimates it would take three months to make headstone repairs
Thursday, April 27
Spring weekend options include fishing at Crockett Park, a fundraiser walk at Airlie, book signing and merchant celebration in Warrenton
More Fauquier news
© Copyright 2011-2016

50 Culpeper Street, Suite 3
Warrenton, Virginia 20187
540.359.6574
Crime Log
Obituaries
Business
Add Your News
The Big Picture
Ellen’s Kitchen
and Garden

Features
Real Estate
For Sale
Employment
Automotive
Announcements
Legal Notices
Post an Ad
Advertise
Terms of Service