North-east councillors could agree a preferred site for a new multi-million-pound community campus when they meet next week.
Aberdeenshire Council has committed to delivering the £71 million project in Peterhead, which would hold a new 1,400-pupil secondary along with the potential for a new primary school for up to 600 children.
The public were given the chance to vote on two preferred options during a consultation event at the current Peterhead Academy site on Prince Street and a plot of land at Kinmundy.
In a new report, council officers revealed there was a “strong preference” for the academy to be located at Kindmundy, with 281 supporting this option compared to 101 for the current site.
It said: “The main reason for this was around less disruption to pupils’ education, however, there were some concerns raised around the distance to Kinmundy for those living in the town centre.”
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However, the report, which will be considered by a meeting of all councillors on Thursday, added there was also a “strong preference” for some community facilities, including the school theatre and pool, to be retained in the town centre.
As a result, officers have recommended councillors approve Kinmundy as the preferred area but are also assessing the potential of providing facilities on the current academy site.
A full site survey will be conducted at the site to determine the ground conditions with the outcome of this expected by the end of the month. This will allow an accurate cost plan to be developed for the site, according to the report.
Initial feedback has indicated that the preferred site will require remedial work, and therefore will cost more than the projected £71m to develop.
Engagement events are planned for the start of the next academic year in August to further refine options with parents, pupils and staff.