North Georgia Christian School has a new place to call home. Or at least the land for one.
The 140-acre plot at the intersection of Poplar Springs and Candler roads will be the site for its future campus, to be completed in fall 2016.
“We felt like we needed to find a piece of property not too far from Gainesville that could also serve the south end of the county and other counties south of us better,” said Al Gainey, chairman of the board of trustees.
The student body comes from Hall, Lumpkin, Gwinnett, Forsyth, Barrow, Jackson, DeKalb, Habersham, Banks and Dawson counties.
Carol Cox, head of school, said she is excited about what this location means for its growth.
“We have families that travel all over to get to where we are,” Cox said. “Now there’s the increased opportunity to see that we would be able to be large enough to meet the needs of people in Hall County and the surrounding counties.”
The search for the right property started with 50 options and was narrowed to two, Gainey said.
“We had 18 of us in (a) room, and had the architects discussing each property with us until all the questions were answered. Then, everybody went to a different room in the building and were told to pray about it.”
Afterward, they held a vote.
“Every one of those people voted for the same piece of property,” Gainey said. “And that was absolutely incredible. That had to be a God thing. Period. That just doesn’t happen. Not when you have 18 people with different opinions and different thoughts.”
The land they chose was owned by Dale and Jackie Nabb, who donated 134 acres. The other six acres were purchased along with a 4,000-square-foot house.
Once the architects mapped out the plans, the next step was fundraising. In the next 12 to 24 months, money should be in place for the building.
“It’s going to be a long-term project. We don’t expect to do this overnight. We’ve got a lot of money to raise,” Gainey said.
Until then, North Georgia Christian’s current campus will stay at its Flowery Branch location, housed in a modular campus near Chestnut Mountain Church.
“Chestnut Mountain Church has made us feel right at home. They have been such gracious hosts for us here,” Cox said.
The school’s sports teams regularly use the church’s facilities, but Cox says “the school spirit for the students would be the feeling of having that on the campus.”
“The first building will be a multipurpose building,” Gainey said. “It will be the first gymnasium and will have some administrative offices and things like your band room, your music facilities, weight rooms — those kinds of things.”
He said he is excited for the future of North Georgia Christian and its new campus.
“I’m telling you, you don’t see this kind of project being put together much anymore.”