By Bryan Boggiano
The city commission approved additional classrooms and a gymnasium for Imagine Charter School at their Nov. 3 meeting.
Imagine Charter School at Broward, located at 9001 Westview Drive, is adding a 22,000 square-foot building with 12 additional classrooms and a gymnasium/auditorium. This will be in addition to their current 65,400 square-foot facility. Basketball courts will be removed; however, there will be a new soccer field.
The expansion includes additional parking and a new drop-off/pickup area.
Accommodating up to 240 students, the expansion will bring enrollment up from 840 to about 1,080.
Since Imagine Charter is a school located in the business district, it needed a conditional use approval for the expansion. Conditions include being more than 30 feet from residential properties and conducting traffic and noise studies.
The school will build a five-foot low wall around the new building surrounding the HVAC units. They will also remove invasive species, and trees —mainly cypress trees, and will replace them with silver buttonwoods and live oaks along the eastern side.
Addressing the commission, Director of Developmental Services Julie Krolak said that the school would pay $27,000 to the city’s tree trust fund, which allows the city to replace the trees elsewhere. The comments came in response to former Mayor Roy Gold, who asked what the city would do to mitigate the tree loss.
For traffic, the city recommended adding two additional stacking lanes in the parking lot, allowing parents to enter the school campus 30-45 minutes before the 8:30 a.m. start and 3 p.m. dismissal times and notifying parents of illegal activities U-turn enforcement.
As part of the conditional use, the building approval only pertains to Imagine Charter School. Additionally, the school will limit sports activity to daytime hours and for practice only.
The conditional use approval also sets the maximum amount of students on campus at any time at 1,080 K-8 students and 96 VPK students.
Vice Mayor Joshua Simmons made the motion to approve the conditional use, which Commission Shawn Cerra seconded. It passed unanimously.
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- Bryan has a degree in journalism from the University of Florida and earned his masters in geosciences from Florida International University, where he focused in atmospheric sciences. His interests include weather, entertainment, and municipal government.
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