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Pacific Beach Elementary Celebrates Groundbreaking

NEWS RELEASE: District and City Leaders Join Pacific Beach Elementary Students and Community to Celebrate Start of Construction for New Kindergarten Building, Joint-Use Field Expansion and More
Posted on 10/10/2023



News Release

District and City Leaders Join Pacific Beach Elementary Students and Community to Celebrate Start of Construction for New Kindergarten Building, Joint-Use Field Expansion and More

Tuesday, October 10, 2023

SAN DIEGO - New indoor and outdoor facilities for students and neighbors in North Pacific Beach are officially on the way.

On Tuesday, Pacific Beach Elementary School students joined leaders from San Diego Unified School District and the City of San Diego, parents, and community members to celebrate the start of construction on their Whole Site Modernization and Joint-Use Field Expansion project.

The project will bring students a new kindergarten building, a grass playfield, a secure main campus entryway, renovated classrooms, and shade shelters.

“I’m excited; the students are excited; the community is excited,” said Jennifer Grondek, Principal of Pacific Beach Elementary. “We’ve been planning these together and now it’s time to see our vision come to life.”

Funded by local bond measures, the upcoming kindergarten facility will include modern, state-of-the-art classrooms and collaborative workspaces that lead out to a new play structure with a shade shelter. A second shade shelter will be installed in the general play area. All existing classrooms, the student services facility, and the multi-purpose room will be renovated and all restrooms and the school kitchen will be upgraded. To make room for these new facilities, all portable classrooms will be removed.

“It’s a win-win for our students and the community of North Pacific Beach,” said Cody Petterson, Board of Education Trustee for San Diego Unified. “Students will have high-quality indoor and outdoor facilities that will encourage them to learn, work, and play together - before, during, and after school.”

Located along Tourmaline Street, Pacific Beach Elementary School has served the community for 93 years.

First opened in 1930, Pacific Beach Elementary began with just one campus building, then added an additional building in 1938. As the population grew, so did the campus. Five additional buildings were added from 1940 - 1957.

In 1976, the 1930 buildings were replaced by one building, with five buildings constructed for the former Los Altos Child Development Center. At that time, three portable classrooms were added due to the increased student population.

In 2004, a 1.8-acre joint-use field along Turquoise Street was created for student and public use. Over the years, the community asked for more green space at the Tourmaline street campus. Now in 2023, the joint-use field expansion is beginning.

When complete, the 2.8-acre joint-use area will include a walking and running track, a renovated basketball court, play equipment, new trees and benches, a drinking fountain, secure perimeter fencing, and a public access gate.

“Here in Pacific Beach, we are meeting the community's need for additional recreation space while delivering active play areas for the students," said Councilmember Joe LaCava. “‘The ‘Play All Day’ joint-use partnership between the City of San Diego and San Diego Unified School District is more than just an investment; it’s a promise delivered. Together, the School District and the City are delivering community spaces here in Pacific Beach and across the city for generations of students and families to come.’”

As part of the Play All Day partnership with the City of San Diego, the joint-use area will be accessible to the community as a local park after school hours and during school breaks.

A Universal Transitional Kindergarten through fifth-grade campus, Pacific Beach Elementary offers robust arts and science programs; music, theater, and dance opportunities; and hands-on scientific experiences through a partnership with San Diego Youth Science.

The project is anticipated to be completed in late 2025.

Read more about the Play All Day Parks program here.