Category Archives: Building Additions

E-SPLOST Budget Overruns and Projects on Hold

The current DeKalb Schools budget for E-SPLOST V projects is $561 million. The most recent estimated cost for those projects is $684.4 million. We are roughly 22% over budget (not including any project adjustments made for recent enrollment forecasts).

Enrollment Adjusted Estimated Costs
Due to the most recent enrollment forecasts, most of the building addition projects have either been reduced or cancelled. However, Chamblee Charter HS addition will stay the same and Dunwoody HS is getting 1,000 seats. Accounting for the reductions and cancellations, the enrollment adjusted estimated cost is $638 million ($77 million over current budget).

The new facilities and additions by themselves are projected to be $21 million over budget.

ESLPOST V Project Area Current Budget New Estimated Costs Enrollment Adjusted Estimated Costs
Safety and Security Improvements $12,872,000 $40,629,074 $40,629,074
New Facilities and Additions $304,890,566 $372,197,439 $325,969,237
Facility Condition Improvements $96,948,000 $107,091,710 $107,091,710
Technology Improvements $65,000,000 $68,300,000 $68,300,000
Buses, Vehicles, and Equipment $40,075,000 $40,075,000 $40,075,000
Management Support and Contigency $41,214,434 $56,742,726 $56,742,726
Grand Total $561,000,000 $685,035,949

Increased Construction Costs
Increasing construction costs can be attributed to numerous things including a robust construction market, rising cost of labor due to low unemployment, material costs, tariffs on imported construction materials and more stringent building requirements.

Projects ON HOLD Due to Insufficient Funds

1. Cross Keys MS Converstion and Addition ($10 M)
2. Cedar Gove HS Auditorium ($6 M)
3. Clarkston HS Addition ($18 M)
4. New Cross Keys HS ($84.8 M)
5. Chamblee Charter HS Addition ($21.5 M)
6. Dunwoody HS Addition ($17.7 M)
7. Lakeside HS Addition ($26 M)
1. Arts School ($11 M)

Options to Address Budget Issues

Revenues over the last 6 years have doubled while the number of students has remained the same. However, the school district is looking into borrowing money.

Option 1: $63 Million COPS – Finance Dunwoody HS addition, Lakeside HS addition and the Arts School.

Option 2: $80 Million GO Bond – Finance Dunwoody HS addition, Lakeside HS addition, the Arts School and add $17 million to capital renewal.

Option 3: $100 Million GO Bond – Finance Dunwoody HS addition, Lakeside HS addition, the Arts School, add $5 million to capital renewal, New Cross Keys MS Conversion, Cedar Grove HS Auditorium, Clarkston HS addition.

Option 4: Nothing – Eliminate the projects on hold, decrease most project areas and increase program contingency by $11 million.

Moving Forward

The Board of Education will have illegal rolling meetings behind closed doors over the next week to prioritize projects and discuss the funding options.

Gym Floor Space By High School

Dunwoody High School and Lakeside High School have some of the smallest gyms in the school district. How can we in good conscious pack our schools with students without providing them the proper facilities?

The building additions will ONLY include classroom, media center, kitchen, cafeteria and parking additions. Why does the school council at DHS welcome this? Dunwoody HS and Lakeside HS gyms can’t handle the number of students we have now.

One of the coaches at DHS characterized the current situation at the Kingsley meeting saying Dunwoody HS, with 2000+ students, is given the same resources as all the other high schools with less than 1000 students. We don’t have enough space for anything and what we do have is getting worn down much faster than the current maintenance cycle is providing for.


High School Region Gym Floor in SF Enrollment Capacity
Lakeside HS 2 10355 2111 1796
McNair, Ronald E. HS 7 10545 658 1594
Druid Hills HS 2 10584 1324 1405
Cross Keys HS 1 10647 1479 1286
Miller Grove HS 5 10700 1319 1830
Dunwoody HS 1 10944 2095 1509
Tucker HS 2 10961 1769 1747
Towers HS 6 11100 832 1299
Columbia HS 6 11200 961 1430
Clarkston HS 4 11286 1398 1209
Southwest DeKalb HS 5 11330 1175 1825
Cedar Grove HS 7 12084 1116 1247
Arabia Mountain HS 3 12768 1339 1582
Chamblee HS 1 13078 1722 1723
Lithonia HS 3 13098 1360 1416
Stephenson HS 3 13800 1438 2040
Martin Luther King, Jr. HS 5 14600 1535 2037
Redan HS 3 19153 998 1677