NewsHillsborough County


Overdevelopment is serious concern for Hillsborough County Commissioners at latest meeting

Posted at 5:08 PM, Sep 06, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-06 18:24:25-04

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla — Growth is a sign of a strong economy and in south Hillsborough County it’s happening all over.

It’s one reason "TTT" high school is being built: to help take the burden off other overcrowded schools in the area.

"I have now seen a lot of large new developments in the pipeline that are all counting on sending their kids to TTT,” said Marella Smith, a Hillsborough County Commissioner for District 5.

But commissioner Smith isn’t so sure all of the kids that’ll be living in these communities are actually going to fit.

Smith says state law allows developers to pay money to the school district so kids have a spot. The district then picks out where the new school will go.

"I’m going to recommend to anyone a new project that comes asking for work and concurrency to seriously consider building a school inside their category,” said Kimberly Overman, Hillsborough County Commissioner for District 7.

According to the school district, TTT is expected to be at capacity when it opens in 2020.

"When our children are being forced to go to other schools that are overcrowded and we are breaching the classroom size this is why. This is exactly why,” said Overman.

Smith says they are then in charge of dealing with infrastructure, traffic and safety — an issue Overman and other commissioners get calls about all the time.

"Please stop approving projects where the capacity to deal with those homes in the area has been out of reach,” said Overman, summing up what the callers say.

She and others want to work closer with the school district on where these new schools go so they can get a better handle on growth.