More than three years after Pleasanton voters passed the $270 million school facilities bond Measure I1 to repair and modernize local schools, Pleasanton Unified School District celebrated the start of the initiative’s first large-scale construction project with a groundbreaking ceremony at Lydiksen Elementary School on Friday.
The $30 million Lydiksen rebuild will kick off with construction of the secondary parking and drop-off loop and relocating the Kids Club classrooms. The secondary drop-off loop will help ease traffic jams at the front of the school and along Foothill Road, and set the stage when new classroom buildings are added this summer at the campus that was originally built in 1968.
The late morning event was attended by hundreds of Lydiksen students wearing clothes in their school’s signature shade of purple, as well as PUSD staff including Superintendent David Haglund and the entire Board of Trustees, and Pleasanton Vice Mayor Kathy Narum. During introductory remarks, Haglund asked the children to tell each other about the holiday gifts they received recently, then held a white safety helmet up high in the air.
“Here’s my Christmas present; it’s a hard hat, and that’s because we’re going to start the construction projects here at Lydiksen,” Haglund said. “During this year, we’re also going to start (building new science classrooms) at Foothill and Amador, so I’m really excited to have my hard hat so that I can start the construction projects.”
“Foothill was not here when Lydiksen was built; Stoneridge Mall was not here when Lydiksen was built. Many of your parents and your principal were not here when Lydiksen was built, either,” principal Jacob Berg told the crowd. “We are building this new school for our 689 students who are sitting here with us today. We are building this new school for you ... for all the students who will be here eventually.”
Other Measure I1 projects have been relatively low profile, like when the campus received a technology and network upgrade last year along with all other PUSD elementary sites and Village High School. Fire alarm and security system upgrades are also planned for PUSD campuses in the future.
PUSD is also preparing to build new science classrooms at Foothill and Amador Valley High later this year, and Hart Middle School will also have a new science building next year. Measure I1 revenue will fund construction at all three schools.
The Lydiksen rebuild is expected to be complete by next summer and open with the start of the 2021-22 school year.