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$150 Million For Unit 4 Highschools

Updated: Wednesday, July 30 2014, 10:53 PM CDT

Unit 4 Superintendent, Dr. Judy Wiegand says "at last night's meeting, the board made that decision to move forward with the site they selected back in January which is the Interstate Drive site".

The 80- acre site purchased this past January cost $3.2 million. The new school would include 21st century classrooms, labs and various athletic fields.

Mike Broadrick says, "I'm not in favor of the proposed location as it stands right now...I would rather see it more centralized in the city of Champaign someway, somehow".

Broadrick is a graduate of Central. His three children went there as well. He believes a referendum for tax payers to pay $150 million won't pass.

"I feel that clear out on Interstate Drive. It's just doing a disservice to the students. The transportation's gonna be a problem. It's gonna create more problems then it's gonna create good," Broaderick says.

"So I certainly understand the concerns regarding going to the edge of the city, but I think we have to keep in mind that there's no perfect site. So there's a couple things, if previous boards and administrations would have done some land banking, twenty or thirty years ago, we probably wouldn't be in this situation," Wiegand says.

The superintendent also says when Central was built some 50 years ago, it was in the outskirts of town. She believes the city will grow in that direction. Come November, if Champaign residents accept the referendum, the design phase would begin. If they don't, it could be back to square one.

"I hope we don't return completely to the drawing board, but we certainly need to step back and decide why the voters didn't approve it and go from there", Wiegand says.

More than 50 percent of Champaign voters have to approve the referendum on this November's ballot. The board plans to approve the ballot question at its August 11 meeting. The $150 million breaks down to $98 million for Central and $52 million to renovate and expand Centennial.

$150 Million For Unit 4 Highschools

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