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New school at Adlai site would come with price tag of $18M

| Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012, 9:55 p.m.

Building a new school at the Adlai Stevenson Elementary site would cost about $18 million.

Superintendent Timothy Glasspool presented the proposal to board members during district's facilities committee meeting Monday night.

The Plum School Board has been exploring the possibility of building a new school at the site of Adlai Stevenson Elementary and closing Holiday Park Elementary. Both buildings are in need of repairs.

According to Glasspool's presentation, closing Holiday Park would save the district $635,743 annually and $31 million over 25 years.

The proposed construction would take place during the 2013-14 school year with Adlai students attending class at the former Pivik Elementary School. The new Pivik, completed in August, is located across the street from the former school on School Road.

Construction on the new Adlai building, according to the superintendent's timeline, would be completed for the 2014 school year. The exact month would depend upon the type of building design selected by the board. District officials plan to meet with L.R. Kimball officials who designed the new Pivik building to discuss the possibility of using the same design for a new Adlai Stevenson school.

Glasspool also said the timeline calls for redistricting of all students for the 2014-15 school year.

“The whole district needs to be redistricted regardless of what option we go with,” Glasspool said.

The board has taken steps to line up financing for a construction or renovation project.

Board members in September voted to borrow $7.5 million. The board also approved refinancing several bond issues expected to glean the district about $6.5 million.

The district also has about $2 million remaining from the Pivik Elementary School construction project. And the board earlier this year set aside $2.5 million in a fund created for capital improvements. The total from all the sources is $18.5 million.

Board member Loretta White prefers renovating Adlai Stevenson with an addition at a cost of about $11 million. The option includes closing Holiday Park.

“I think we need to renovate,” White said. “We don't need a new school. We could save $7 million.”

Board member Sal Colella supports a new building.

“It is the right time at the right location,” Colella said.

“It will put all schools on parity.”

Glasspool is expected to present more information to the board after the meeting with L.R. Kimball officials.

Karen Zapf is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8753, or kzapf@tribweb.com.

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