McKinney ISD will clean up a piece of land it owns in northwest McKinney after approval from the board of trustees at a Feb. 22 meeting.

The site sits at the southwest corner of Hardin Boulevard and Holley Ridge Way. In 2006, the district began construction for what was meant to be an elementary school. Shortly after workers installed concrete footings around the perimeter and began installing utilities, a change in state legislation prohibited school districts from constructing roadways.

At the time, the district would have needed to extend Hardin Boulevard north of Wilmeth Road in addition to extending part of Holley Ridge Way for vehicle access to the campus. The new law caused the district to abandon the site and build what is now Press Elementary School about 2 miles east of the property.

Concrete footings and piers are still present on the old construction site. Instead of using the old materials, the district hired Prime Construction Services to remove the footings and the top 3 feet of piers for $99,750.

In addition to age, the district is removing the materials because city and fire codes have changed since 2006, Chief Operations Officer Greg Suttle said.

“One of the things in the structural code is you have to now put in a storm shelter,” Suttle said. “The footings that are there now are inadequate for that structure, so those have to come out.”

After the old structures are removed, Suttle said a survey crew will locate all the piers so when the district eventually builds a school, the piers will be easy to find. He added it is better to do the work now instead of waiting for the necessity of a new school because “it’s not going to get any cheaper.”

“At this point, we just need to get it out and get it ready,” he said. “I’m not saying we’re going to need a school in three or four years, but Painted Tree [new McKinney neighborhood under development] is looking to be built out. We’re going to need a site in that area at some point. If we can get it cleaned up, it’ll be easy to mow it and maintain it.”