Construction workers unearth historic cemetery while working on future Fort Bend ISD school building

SUGAR LAND, Texas —During construction of a future school building, Fort Bend ISD, in partnership with the Texas Historical Commission, found human remains from a historic cemetery on the construction site.

Construction around the burial site located at University Boulevard and Chatham Avenues has been halted while work is continuing on other parts of the property.

Measures are being taken to make sure the construction of the James Reese Career and Technical Center doesn't interfere with the historic cemetery. It's currently unclear as to the age of the cemetery or who is buried at the site.

"We're collaborating with the Texas Historical Commission, and we're so appreciative of their expertise," Fort Bend ISD's Chief Communications Officer Veronica Sopher said. " They guide you through the process on how to make sure we're being respectful, and we're treating the remains with dignity as we try to learn from what we've found."

The school district purchased the land back in 2011.

"There were surveys and preliminary work done when the property was purchased, and at that point there was no indication there was a historical cemetery," Sopher said. "When there are artifacts, there's an opportunity for you to learn, so that's the point where we are now."

The James Reese Career and Technical Center was scheduled to open in August 2019. It's not clear how this discovery will affect the timeline to open the building.