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Daniel Island/Cainhoy high school site in negotiations
By Elizabeth Bush
Jun 19, 2013 - 9:19:59 AM

This map shows the potential location for the new Daniel Island-Cainhoy area high school, scheduled to be completed by August 2017. The parcel of land under consideration is located about eight miles down Clements Ferry Road from Daniel Island and is just south of the Nelliefield Plantation subdivision. Acquisition of the site will be dependent on appraisals, contracts, and other negations prior to being approved.

A potential site for a new high school to serve Daniel Island and Cainhoy area students has been selected.  
The Berkeley County School Board voted 8-0 at their June 11 board meeting to approve the negotiation of a land purchase with Cainhoy Land, LLC to build the highly anticipated school. The site, part of a larger, 8000 acre tract owned by the family of the late Harry Frank Guggenheim on the Cainhoy Peninsula, is located just south of the Nelliefield Plantation subdivision off Clements Ferry Road.
“I think it is outstanding that we have a quality site that is almost literally halfway between Cainhoy School and Daniel Island School,” said Doug Cooper, a Daniel Island resident and Berkeley County School Board member. “It has taken awhile but we will have our own high school soon.”
“We are excited to move forward with a high school for the Cainhoy-Daniel Island area,” added Dr. Rodney Thompson, Berkeley County Schools Superintendent. “Our commitment to student safety is our first priority…. It is intended to relieve overcrowding at Hanahan High School and keep students from crossing the Don Holt Bridge to and from school daily during peak travel times.”
According to Daniel Island Company President Matt Sloan, who is serving as a spokesperson for the property owners, the Guggenheim family was asked by City of Charleston Mayor Joe Riley several years ago to provide a site for the Berkeley County School District.     
“The family has enormous respect for the Mayor and we understand that our property is well located to serve students from Cainhoy and Daniel Island,” said Sloan. “The owners are pleased to be able to help address this community need, and the Daniel Island Company is pleased to be of assistance in bringing the parties together.”
When asked about the contract price for the property, Cooper stated that both parties will each select an appraiser to determine a fair “market value” for the parcel. He did not know yet how many acres comprise the site. That will depend on “wetlands and drainage issues,” he said.  
A number of sites are still under consideration for a second school to serve the Daniel Island and Cainhoy communities, but the district has not yet announced what grades, middle or elementary, the additional facility will offer. Last fall, school officials confirmed that some sites on Daniel Island were being explored.
“We are fortunate to have several options available and all are under consideration at this time,” said Cooper.
According to Amy Kovach, spokesperson for the school district, land acquisition, appraisals and finalization of contracts for the new high school site are expected to be completed by October 2013, followed by the hiring of an architectural team and contractor. A 12-month design phase is estimated to be finished by next summer, with the opening of the new facility projected for August 2017.  Community meetings are being planned to gather public input. Construction on the approved design will take approximately 18 months. The school is expected to initially accommodate 950 students, with a future capacity of 1500.  
The high school project is one of five new buildings to be built as part of the district’s 10 year capital building and renovation plan.  In November of 2012, Berkeley County voters passed a $198 million school improvement referendum to finance the facilities, as well as a number of renovation projects   across the district. In addition to the two new schools planned for the Daniel Island and Cainhoy area, the district plans to construct three elementary schools at Nexton, Tanner Plantation and Fox Bank Plantation.



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