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North Bethany School Costs Go Up

Posted by Peter W on October 19, 2007

The Beaverton School District has done new projections for the cost of providing schools for kids in North Bethany, and it doesn’t look good.

The first thing they’ve found is that people North of Hwy 26 have more kids:

“Analyses over the past couple of years have indicated a rising student generation factor for single family dwellings north of Highway 26, particularly at the elementary level.”

based on that, they find that there are more kids than they projected earlier:

“using the more regional specific student generation factors for areas north of Highway 26, the total projected number of students increases to 2,212, with 418 more students coming from single family dwellings”

And then they do the math and find out that the projected cost is over four times what they estimated earlier:

In summary, contrasted with the January 15, 2007 DRAFT NORTH BETHANY AREA FUNDING FACT BASE: TECHNICAL MEMORANDUM #1 which suggested an estimated revenue cost of $25M to address the educational infrastructure costs for North Bethany, a more accurate projection is at a minimum $90M for an assumed 1,794 students, to a more probable $111M for the larger estimate of 2,212 students generated from the North Bethany UGB area.” [emphasis added]

Then I did the math, and divided $111M by the 5003 units they are building, and it looks like the cost of providing schools for the kids (who are mostly coming from single family detached houses) is $22186 per home (that is, $22K for each unit, including every apartment unit, ‘specialty units’ like student housing, detached houses, condos, and townhouses). Split over 30 years it is still roughly $740 / year / home. I guess that is why the school district is lucky that everyone else in the district — including lots of folks outside North Bethany — help pay for new schools!

I wonder if it would make sense to have more attached housing, since it takes up less than half the space, and for every 1 additional kid that comes from an attached unit there would be 9 units that are paying taxes but don’t have kids (to compare – with detached housing, you get on average almost one kid for every two houses).

I also wonder if the school or county has though about giving a tax break to denser development to acknowledge the fact that they use less services (less schools as well as less miles of roads and water+gas+sewer pipes)?

View the full report here: BSD North Bethany School Cost Estimate.


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