Weather stops groundbreaking for Crestview Elementary; shovels turned at new administrative center

Chairs were left empty Thursday morning as the groundbreaking at Crestview Elementary was called off because of the weather.
Chairs were left empty Thursday morning as the groundbreaking at Crestview Elementary was called off because of the weather.

On a rainy Thursday morning, the Shawnee Mission School District was able to get one more groundbreaking completed before rain and lightning forced the ceremony at Crestview Elementary in Merriam to be cancelled.

Before the heavy rains hit, school administrators gathered for a brief ceremony on the site of the former Antioch Middle School. Dirt is already being moved for what is being called the Center for Academic Achievement. That building, to occupy 131,000 square feet, will combine a number of the district’s administration functions from at least four buildings across the district.

Later in the morning, the rain forced the celebration that had been planned for Crestview students and parents to be called off. Crestview students have been moved to the old Arrowhead Elementary building on Santa Fe while the Crestview building on Craig is demolished and a new elementary is constructed on the same site.

The new Crestview school will be 63,865 square feet compared to the old building’s total of 48,979 square feet. Wednesday, the district held the groundbreaking for the new Trailwood Elementary that is being built without moving students. A groundbreaking for the new Briarwood, also where students have been moved during construction, will be held in September.

All three of the elementary rebuilds in northeast Johnson County are funded by the bond issue from this year. The Center for Academic Achievement is funded through capital outlay money. The new administrative center also will be home to several of the district’s signature programs.