A K-12 charter school for up to 3,000 students has been proposed to replace the long-established Heritage private school on the south side of SW 120th Street, just east of Miami Executive Airport and London Square.
Residents of The Crossings, Kendall Breeze and other large communities only recently became aware of plans for the aviation-focused school when new signage identifying its name as “BridgePrep” appeared alongside a banner advertising a “free public charter school” with a website and telephone for information.
Application for the new charter school was made Feb. 15 by “Smart Charter Group LLC,” of Hollywood, for a special exception to permit operation on the campus of The Heritage School established in 1979 at 13300 SW 120 St.
A pre-application review by Miami-Dade Police notes “serious concerns” due to increased traffic in the area that is adjacent to a London Square Shopping Center with a Costco warehouse, and the a major intersection at SW 120th Street and 137th Avenue.
The report emphasizes that “developing an alternative method of moving traffic away or off of SW 120th Street and traffic plans that do not include use of police officers in the flow of traffic are crucial.”
The memo dated Mar. 11 also asks for staggered start and dismissal times, additional traffic control devices on surrounding streets and a traffic plan to include an alternative route to SW 120th Street as “the only ingress and egress for student dropoff and pickup.”
Designed to replace a cluster of one-story buildings on the 10.99-acre site, the new BridgePrep school displays a two-story structure in a U-shaped configuration predominately for classrooms, based on 1,060 K-8 students and 1,460 in Grades 9-12.
Petitions “to stop” a potential zoning change to allow the increased enrollment have been posted for resident signatures at The Crossings’ clubhouse, according to Nancy Perlmutter who said concerns for traffic also have been forwarded for review by theKendall Federation of Homeowner Associations.
Charter school applications now are heard directly by Miami-Dade County commissioners bypassing a preliminary public hearing and recommendation for zoning changes by a community council acting as a Zoning Advisory Board.