The Odyssey Charter School development process has slowed significantly, thus forcing the school to look at leasing options for the next school year.
Odyssey Charter School, a publicly-funded Kindergarten through 5th grade elementary school located in Wilmington, has purchased the 16-acre Mundy Farm on Route 48/Lancaster Pike in order to expand its facilities to include a Middle and High School. Odyssey's proposal calls for three school buildings, athletic fields and parking facilities totaling 225,592 square feet that will be built adjacent to the Coffee Run Condominiums and 16 homes in Westgate Farms.
The residents surrounding the project have continued to express their concerns to Odyssey regarding the project's density, its impact on neighboring traffic, water/sewage/drainage, and historic preservation.
Given the concerns raised by Westgate Farms residents, Odyssey facilitated an open presentation and discussion about the development with representatives from local community organization on October 15, 2012. At that meeting, it was decided that a small group of community representatives would work with the Odyssey project team in order to identify and explore alternative development options with respect to the concerns raised.
As a result, Odyssey Charter's advanced timeline for breaking ground on Mundy Farm has been delayed, and the school is now looking into leasing a property for the 2013/2014 school year.
Odyssey has already extended its lease at its current location on 3821 Lancaster Ave in Wilmington for the 2012/2013 school year. The school also already owns the upper elementary operations off 201 Bayard Ave. However, more space is needed for the upcoming K-6 student count.
According to George Chambers, Board President for Odyssey, two additional spaces have been identified as options. They are the St Helena's School in Wilmington and a building within the Barley Mill complex off Route 141 currently owned by Stoltz Real Estate Partners.
"Either of the options above represents a strong interim configuration for Odyssey as authorized by DOE with added lower grade sections and a 6th grade for the 2013/2014 school year," Chambers stated in a letter to John H. Carwell, Jr., Director of the Charter School Office.