Salvage company negotiating to demolish old TJ High School
The site of the old Thomas Jefferson High School could be transformed into added parking spaces for the TJ stadium within the next year.
School board members likely will vote in December to enter a contract with a company seeking to salvage the remainder of the 60-year-old building at 310 Old Clairton Road for its steel, copper and valuable metals, while demolishing it in the process, according to Ryan Snodgrass, director of facilities.
After opening a new $95 million Thomas Jefferson High School at 830 Old Clairton Road for the 2019-20 school year, the district held two auctions earlier this year to sell off equipment and furniture from the old school. That included everything from old desks to kitchen and maintenance equipment. Numbers have not been finalized for how much the auctions will bring in.
“Pretty much everything movable is gone or sold,” Snodgrass said.
Snodgrass told board members at the Nov. 19 meeting that a company is interested in salvaging the building for its remaining parts. He did not identify the company, as a contract and negotiations still are being worked out.
Over the next month, Snodgrass said, he hopes to work out a contract with the company to present to the school board at the Dec. 3 meeting for approval.
It is unknown if there will be a cost for demolition, he said.
The district will be responsible for removing all hazardous material from the building, which includes everything from asbestos to hydraulic oil in the elevators.
Once that is complete, the plan as it stands would be to turn over the building to a company to salvage the school.
“Give me dirt. I want a piece of ground,” Snodgrass said.
The district will work with a civil designer to outline plans to construct added parking on the site.
While the old school is no longer being used, the TJ stadium, track and corresponding ball fields all remain on the site. The sign outside the old school was changed in the last week to indicate it is now the site stadium.
“That’s our stadium now. This is the high school,” Snodgrass said.
Demolition should not impact regular operations at the stadium, he said.
Permitting will determine much of the timing for the project.
Ideally, the new parking lot will be ready for the start of the 2020-21 football season.