Patrick Burke, Deputy Superintendent of Operations for Fulton County Schools, confirmed Friday that the Georgia Department of Transportation has approved a new site for Heards Ferry Elementary.
Fulton County Schools plans to purchase a commercial property at 6151 Powers Ferry Road. Last week, Patch reported that location as the likely site for Heards Ferry, according to a source.
Heards Ferry currently shares a 50-acre property with Riverwood International Charter School.
During a Friday afternoon media call, Burke said a variety of businesses operate at 6151 Powers Ferry Road. The property owner is working to relocate the 14 tenants in the building, but eminent domain may be necessary.
“A sign will go up on the site on Monday, which is why we wanted to get ahead of this to announce that the [Fulton County School] board may have a meeting on Oct. 15 about proceeding with eminent domain,” Burke said.
Collins Cooper Carusi Architects has been hired, and construction crews will break ground in early to mid-April 2014. The relocated school is scheduled to open in August 2015.
“That’s why we had to put eminent domain out there as tool, to put it on a critical timeline,” Burke added.
Fulton officials looked at more than 25 sites and worked with the City of Sandy Springs to identify the best location.
Burke said traffic is a big issue in the area of the new site. “It’s been a consideration all along. It’s an issue at the existing site. It’s a challenge no matter what you do in the Sandy Springs area,” he said. “The number of options were few and far between in what we were looking for. I think we’ve really tried to find the most viable option out there.”