Published November 12, 2023 at 3:12 PM MST

Construction of a new high school is in progress in Heber City, part of Wasatch County School District’s response to a growing population in the valley.

Work is continuing rapidly on the county’s second high school, intended to help ease overcrowding in the current high school and make space for the district’s growing student population.

The district held the groundbreaking for the school in May. It’s slated to open in fall 2026.

The current high school is full past capacity by about 500 seats, and with estimates projecting the school district will add some 4,000 new students by 2060, the district is acting now to prepare.

In early November, the building’s foundations and the shape of some of its classrooms were beginning to take shape in front of the backdrop of Mount Timpanogos.

“We’re really happy with this site,” superintendent Paul Sweat said. “As we had the groundbreaking and sat on the stage and watched the clouds come over Timpanogos – what a great place for kids to learn and grow.”

The new high school is near the Heber Valley Historic Railroad, at 1000 West 100 South in Heber City. Architect Curtis Miner explained his team is working to incorporate some of that local heritage into the building’s design.

“It gives kind of this rail station concourse feel to it, with a clock and with some metal elements,” he said.

Construction is proceeding according to schedule, with crews planning to have all the groundwork laid before winter. That way, when snow comes, it won’t slow down workers’ progress.

Sweat said the district plans other new buildings in the coming years as part of its long-term vision. By 2027, the district is projected to grow by about 1,700 students.

“The next one [is] a new elementary school in five to six years,” he said. “And we’re actually talking to a couple of other larger developers… to look for and possibly identify a site for a third middle school in the next 10 to 15 years.”

The new high school’s name has yet to be announced. Sweat said the district is hard at work on plans for personnel, student life and more to ensure it will be ready to open in fall 2026.