Alvin, Friendswood ISDs bond projects and 2 other education stories to watch for in 2022

Both Alvin ISD and Friendswood ISD will make progress on major bond projects in 2022.
Both Alvin ISD and Friendswood ISD will make progress on major bond projects in 2022.

Both Alvin ISD and Friendswood ISD will make progress on major bond projects in 2022.

In 2022, both Alvin and Friendswood ISDs will be making progress on a number of projects from the districts’ 2018 and 2020 bonds, respectively.

AISD’s $480.5 million bond, which is the largest yet for the district, was approved by voters in November 2018. There are eight projects in total: Two are underway; two are completed; and four are in planning stages.

This year, one campus will open, and three will break ground. In the summer, construction will begin on the new LeRoy Castro Junior High School, which will open in fall 2024.

The board of trustees Dec. 13 heard a presentation on the junior high school’s schematic design from AISD Director of Building Program Bill VanWagner and Brendon Hoffman with architecture firm Huckabee.

The campus will be on the same site as the new $132.5 million Iowa Colony High School, which is near the intersection of Iowa Colony Boulevard and Davenport Parkway; the high school will open this fall.

The new $49.5 million junior high campus will feature a centralized library with gyms and fine arts spaces on one side of the building and administrative offices and special programs and services on the other.

“We used the same architectural language [as the high school] to keep that low-profile, functional layout,” Hoffman said.

AISD will also break ground on Barbara Bennett Elementary School and the Alvin Elementary School replacement this fall, per district officials. The $26.9 million Barbara Bennett Elementary will open for students in fall 2024.

Officials said designs for the Alvin Elementary replacement will be presented at the Jan. 11 board meeting after press time. The $28.2 million campus will also open in fall 2024.

Meanwhile, FISD will focus on two projects this year from its 2020 $128 million bond. The Friendswood High School renovations and additions as well as the replacement of Cline Elementary School are both expected to begin construction in April and March, respectively. The high school project has been budgeted for $51.6 million, while the new elementary school has been budgeted for $37 million, according to agenda documents.

Both projects are set to go out for bid in February and March with contracts being awarded in the next month and construction beginning in the month after that and continuing through 2023.

“The first part of the year is getting final bids and awarding contracts, and then I think the community will see a lot of progress and work taking place over the second through fourth quarters of 2022,” FISD board President Tony Hopkins said.

Once both projects are underway, FISD trustees will turn their attention to the smaller bond projects.

“We’re getting the big projects out of the way, which is probably about 80% of the bond, and we’ll move to the smaller projects ... along with the priority maintenance items across the district,” Hopkins said.

Other education stories to follow in 2022

School board elections to happen in May, November

Pearland, Clear Creek and Alvin ISDs will hold elections May 7, and Friendswood ISD’s election will take place Nov. 8. The filing deadline is Feb. 18 for the May election, while the deadline is Aug. 22 for November.

In PISD, three positions will be up for election in May: Positions 5, 6 and 7. Also in May, two AISD and two CCISD positions will be on the ballot. Position 5 and Position 4 are up in AISD; District 1 and the at-large Position B will be on the ballot in CCISD.

In November, three FISD positions will be on the ballot: Positions 5, 6 and 7.

Manufacturing company to build complex in Alvin ISD

Maxter Healthcare plans to break ground in 2022 on a manufacturing complex within Alvin ISD boundaries that will eventually provide jobs to more than 1,000 local residents.

The company, a subsidiary of Malaysian glove maker Supermax Corp., plans to build a 200-acre complex in Brazoria County, according to materials presented to AISD’s board of trustees by Eric Geisler, president of Economic Incentive Services, Dec. 13.

“We’ve been told that this project is the biggest [initial job creator] that Brazoria County has ever seen, so it’s a great opportunity for diversifying the economic base here,” Geisler said.

The eastern portion of the planned complex is within AISD boundaries just west of Hwy. 288 at the intersection of CR 52 and CR 48. Construction is estimated to begin in the first quarter of 2022.
By Sierra Rozen

Metro Reporter, South Houston

Sierra joined Community Impact Newspaper as a reporter in September of 2021 after graduating with a degree in communication and a minor in journalism from St. Edward's University in Austin, TX. Sierra covers all things in the South Houston area but in particular covers Friendswood ISD, Friendswood City Council and Harris County METRO. Prior to CI, Sierra served as the viewpoints and life and arts editor for Hilltop Views, as well as interning for Austin Woman Magazine.

By Andy Yanez

Reporter, Pearland/Friendswood

Andy joined Community Impact Newspaper as a reporter in June 2021 after graduating with a degree in journalism from the University of Houston. He started as the South Houston Metro Reporter where he helped each different edition in the South Houston market, from Katy to the Bay area, before transitioning to the Pearland and Friendswood market in August 2021. He covers education, local government, transportation, business, real estate development and nonprofits in these communities. Prior to arriving at Community Impact, Andy was the sports editor of The Cougar, UH's student newspaper, where he covered the university's athletics beat for two years and covered the 2021 NCAA Men's Basketball Final Four in Indianapolis. Andy has appeared in the Houston Chronicle via an internship in 2020, and freelance work. He can be heard on the Pawd Slama Jama podcast still covering UH athletics.

By Colleen Ferguson

Reporter, Bay Area

A native central New Yorker, Colleen worked as an editorial intern with the Cy-Fair and Lake Houston | Humble | Kingwood editions of Community Impact Newspaper before joining the Bay Area team in 2020. She covers public education, higher education, business and development news in southeast Houston. Colleen graduated in 2019 from Syracuse University and the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, where she worked for the university's independent student newspaper The Daily Orange. Her degrees are in journalism and Spanish language and culture. When not chasing a story, Colleen can be found petting cats and dogs, listening to podcasts, swimming or watching true crime documentaries.