Tisbury voters finally said yes to a new school at their annual town election Tuesday, approving a $55 million renovation plan by a landslide and capping years of debate and anguish over building renovation plans.

The count was 821-224, according to official results released Wednesday by Tisbury town clerk J. Hillary Conklin..

School supporters and building committee members rejoice after the votes are counted Tuesday. — Jeanna Shepard

In an upset, voters also elected Roy Cutrer as a new selectman, ousting one-term incumbent Jim Rogers, 647-347.

The school vote left members of the school building committee exhilarated and grateful on a rainy election night after an epic journey to design a project that would pass muster with voters.

And on Tuesday it finally did. The vote clears the way for the town to borrow $55 million through a 30-year bond issue to pay for the school project.

“The kids deserve this,” said an emotional school principal John Custer who stood soaking wet from campaigning in the rain late Tuesday after the votes were counted.

Plans to rebuild the aging Tisbury School have been on and off the drawing board for years, but the town has struggled to reach consensus on the details until this week.

Three years ago a $46 million plan narrowly failed, and the town had to forfeit millions in state reimbursement money and start over.

Roy Cutrer ousted incumbent Jim Rogers for select board, 642-343. — Jeanna Shepard

“It’s been a long time coming and a lot of effort and a lot of work,” school committee chairman Amy Houghton told the Gazette after the votes were counted Tuesday. “You have to have that kind of dialogue where people can disagree and come back and compromise and that is what I hope this shows — that coming together as a community is what we need to do.”

Speaking to the Gazette by phone Wednesday, school building committee chairman Harold Chapdelaine echoed the remarks.

“Just because some members of the community don’t like the answers that the building committee came up with, does not mean we didn’t hear their questions, or did not value their input,” he said, adding:

“[The wide-margin vote] means a lot to me because we wanted to hear from the community and we want that feedback,” he said. “There was two-way dialogue . . . I think the voters were looking for that inclusion with a project of this magnitude.”

The school construction project will expand and modernize the K-8 brick school off West Spring street that dates to 1929. The expansion will grow the footprint from 56,000 square feet to 76,000 square feet, with a new gymnasium and a preschool on campus. The schematic building design is by Boston-based Tappé Architects to rebuild an energy-neutral school, bringing it into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

But Mr. Chapdelaine said with the project still in the early design phase, the real work is just beginning.

“There’s still a tremendous amount of work that has to be done,” he adding: “The vote basically says okay guys, you’re at the starting line, now really go to work.”

Tuesday began splashed with bright June sunshine and turnout at the polls was steady all day. When dark clouds and rain moved in at suppertime, it did little to deter campaigners, who stayed camped out on the school playground across the street from the emergency services facility, holding signs beneath colorful umbrellass.

The select board race attracted attention, and both candidates and their supporters were out near the polls all day.

Mr. Cutrer a longtime town assessor who ran a campaign against Mr. Rogers, thanked his supporters. “I’m excited, I’m ready to serve the town of Tisbury as their new select board member,” he said after the votes were counted.

The school question was easily approved at a special town meeting on June 13, but a majority vote at ballot box vote was the crucial test after 2018 when the earlier school project had failed by just 21 votes.

Voters spoke loudly this time around.

“I remember how it felt three years ago and how crushing that was . . . 800-200 — that shows support from the town and it feels great,” Mr. Custer said.

Ms. Houghton reflected. “I think the most important thing about this is that despite the vitriol, despite the difficulties, the differences of option, it is overwhelming support for this school,” she said.

Asked what’s next, she didn’t hesitate. “We’re going to get together tomorrow and we’re going start planning for the future, that’s what we’re going to do,” she said.

Other election results:

• Question 2, to exempt the debt for $5 million in roadways and sidewalks improvements in the upcoming decade, passed with overwhelming support, 893-135.

• An open seat on the board of assessors remains vacant, after Mr. Cutrer won the seat with the most write-in votes but declined the office, town clerk J. Hillary Conklin said Wednesday. The seat will be filled at a joint meeting of the board of assessors and select board.

• A one-year seat on the financial advisory committee will be decided at a joint meeting of the finance committee and select board.

• A total of 1,054 total voters cast ballots Tuesday. In the 2020 annual town election, 855 voters cast ballots. In the 2020 presidential election, 2,769 voters of 3,685 registered voters cast ballots.

Elected without contest were:

Mark Campos, constable, 754 votes.

Malcolm Rich Boyd, board of health, 784 votes.

Amy B. Houghton, school committee, 782 votes.

Roland M. Miller, water commissioner, 725 votes.

Elaine T. Miller, planning board, 736 votes.

George Balco, library trustee, 663 votes.

Pamela Street, library trustee, 703 votes.

Janet Hefler, library trustee, 684 votes.

Nancy Gilfoy, financial advisory committee three-years, 696 votes.

Allan Rogers, financial advisory committee three-years, 600 votes.

Dan Seidman, financial advisory committee three-years, elected by write-in.

Rachel Orr, financial advisory committee one-year, 680 votes.