AUSTIN (KXAN) — As home prices continue to increase and new companies pop up around Austin, some families are looking outside the city to put down roots.
That means some surrounding areas like Del Valle ISD are seeing significant growth, and for the school district, that means more schools.
“When you are driving down Braker Lane, you are going to see this beautiful school,” said Del Valle ISD Superintendent Annette Tielle. “You are going to see it in the middle of a beautiful development.”
The district approved the purchase of 149 acres of land which will be the home of not only a second high school but other campuses as well. The purchase was approved in May by voters as part of the district’s 2022 bond program.
The land is divided into two parcels, both in the Whisper Valley neighborhood on the north side of the district. The first parcel is a 78.1-acre plot near the intersection of Braker Lane and Taylor Lane. The second site of land, which is 71.1 acres, will serve as the site for a future elementary and middle school. The 149.2 acres were purchased for $167,785 per acre.
“We also purchased property in the area for another middle school and elementary school,” said Tielle.
Construction on the high school will begin in 2023, with a completion date expected by August 2026. The district has posted renderings of the new school on its website.
“The high school right now has 3,500 students, and in 2026 when we plan to open the second high school, we are projected to have more than 4,000 high school students so this was a necessity for the district,” said Tielle.
Councilmember Vanessa Fuentes said some of the growth comes from people seeking more affordable places to live.
“There are a lot of east Austinites that were pushed out and now live in southeast Austin,” said Fuentes.
Del Valle ISD is also seeing companies like Tesla move to the area. That’s another reason why more developments are going up and more people are moving in.
“With that comes population and growth, but there is a balance,” said Tielle. “There are some areas that are still affordable and some areas where prices are mirroring Austin.”
Fuentes said the district has to stay one step ahead with so many people moving to the area.
“I am super excited to see a second high school facility,” said Fuentes. “It has been a long time coming.”
The Del Valle ISD Board of Trustees will be tasked with coming up with a name for the new high school. Students will have the opportunity to choose the mascot.