LANCASTER – Projecting an enrollment increase of nearly 7,000 students in the next five years, Antelope Valley Union High School District trustees have hired an architecture firm to design the district’s ninth high school. The school, which could cost $120 million to $130 million, is planned for 65 acres in southeast Palmdale at Pearblosssom Highway, Avenue T-8 and 47th Street East. “We need to move ahead on site nine,” trustee Al Beattie said. “We are six months to a year behind schedule. If the projected enrollment keeps increasing like it is, we are behind right now.” The board at last Wednesday’s meeting approved hiring Glendora-based NTD Stichler to design the school. The board will hold a special meeting Nov. 22 to hear a design presentation by the firm. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week The cost of hiring the firm will be about $4.9 million, which will be paid with funds from a 2002 voter-approved high school district bond issue and state funds, a district staff report said. The school’s preliminary target opening date is summer 2010, and the building will be designed to hold between 2,500 and 3,000 students, the report said. To pay for construction of the school and another high school that will be in either southwest Palmdale or northwest Lancaster, the district is considering placing another bond measure on the November 2006 ballot. Like Eastside High School, the district’s latest campus under construction, this ninth high school will not have a stadium or a small gym. The school’s football games will probably be played at either Knight High School, where the district plans to construct a stadium, or Littlerock High School, officials said. “The Antelope Valley continues to show strong patterns of population growth demonstrating a need for additional school construction projects,” the report said. The design and construction of a comprehensive high school takes a minimum of five to six years from inception to occupancy by students, the report said. Karen Maeshiro, (661) 267-5744 [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!