The Watauga County Commissioners agreed to sell the old Watauga High School property in Boone to Appalachian State University in exchange for the school’s Business Affairs Annex, valued at $2.8 million, and $15.5 million, payable over 20 years. Appalachian State leadership was interested in making more space on campus for classrooms, laboratories, offices, and assemblies. The 75-acre high school property, recently appraised at $16.8 million, offered 35 acres of flat, buildable land for relocating nonacademic student support services, including parking and sports fields. Future actions might include restoring the running track, building dormitories, or setting up a campus daycare. The annex sold to the county would be used as a badly-needed indoor recreation center, and afford space for a swimming complex that can be used by high school teams. The annex’s 3.5 acres are located near the county’s wellness district, which already includes ball fields, tennis courts, and a greenway. Appalachian’s Beaver College of Health Sciences is also nearby. Appalachian will begin the transaction with a $25,000 earnest payment, and the deal should close September 30. In October of 2018, the university will turn the annex over to the county, and then in 2022, make its first annual payment to the county from its endowment fund.