Aug
11

Developers Saw School as a Plus in Lowering Land Price

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August 9, 2008

By Jonathan Cribbs – Island Packet

The Beaufort County School District was able to buy more than 200 acres in Bluffton for about $15 million this week — far less than it had planned — because the landowners believe the presence of a school increases the value of their development, district officials and developers said.

The district paid about $65,000 an acre for about 186 acres for a future middle school and high school — part of 225 acres that includes about 39 acres of wetlands, said Phyllis White, the district’s chief financial officer.

The wetlands were about $3,000 an acre.

The final price falls well below what the district planned to pay in growing Bluffton about a year ago — about $275,000 an acre, she said.

That was the primary number used to build April’s $162.7 million bond referendum, which included more than $40 million for new schools. The initial estimates were provided by the Town of Bluffton, White said.

District officials said the low price resulted from a combination of circumstances, the first being a lagging real estate market. School Board Vice Chairman Bob Arundell also said the district included a 7 percent buffer with each proposed project to avoid the costly overruns which occurred in 2006 with Whale Branch High School.

ARTICLE SHORTENED DUE TO LENGTH….

LINK TO ARTICLE HERE:
http://www.islandpacket.com/news/local/story/572085.html

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