Land sale for new K-8 charter school in Poinciana precedes plan approval

AV Homes subsidiary Avatar Properties this week sold a 7.45-acre parcel in the Poinciana area to a Utah-based charter school company that has pending plans for a new K-8 BridgePrep Academy.

American Charter Development (ACD), a lender and developer that focuses exclusively in the charter school arena, paid $1.4 million for the site. The property is at the intersection of Koa Street and San Lorenzo Road, just west of Marigold Avenue.

The deed carried a restrictive covenant that says the site must be used for a charter school or "another family-oriented retail and/or service use," and that construction must be completed within 18 months.

Miami-based BridgePrep filed a Site Development Plan and Building Permit in December, both are still under review in Osceola County. The school was designed by South Carolina-based architect Paul Mussman and would be built in two phases.

Osceola Engineering Inc. provided civil work. 

Fast-growing BridgePrep currently operates 14 tuition-free charter schools in the state and has three slated to open in August. Most of the company's Miami-area schools received A and B grades from the state in 2017, but the new Orlando academy received a D grade. 

ACD previously built the St. Cloud Preparatory Academy before selling its ownership interest to Charter School Capital in 2016. That $10 million sale allowed the school to expand to a new permanent building and open its first high school. ACD remained the developer for the project. 

BridgePrep is one of five new charter schools scheduled to open in Osceola County this fall. Two new charter high schools will offer specialized instruction to prepare students for careers in aviation and sports-related industries

BridgePrep's development plan calls for the school to open with grades K-6 in its first year, adding one new grade level in 2019 and 2020. Enrollment is projected to reach 1,000 students by year five.

Osceola County has 21 charter schools operating in the current school year, including the Poinciana Charter School and Renaissance Charter School at Boggy Creek which opened this school year. 

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