September 19, 2014

Elyria
Mostly sunny
71°F
test

Elyria school board buys 6 more properties

ELYRIA — Elyria school officials on Tuesday agreed to shell out more than $500,000 for six properties that are part of an area targeted for a new high school. 
With Tuesday’s decision, school officials have used more than a third of the $3 million they’ve set aside to purchase more than 50 parcels of land near the current high school.
The targeted land is the chosen site for a new Elyria High, which will cost about $68 million to construct, and is planned for completion by 2012.
With the passage of a levy this past May, local taxpayers agreed to foot about $45 million of the bill, while the state will chip in about $21 million.
The expansion area includes the block between Middle and West avenues and Sixth and Seventh streets, as well as a few other properties at the northwest corner of West Avenue and Sixth Street.
So far, property owners who have agreed to sell their homes to the school district have received slightly more than the suggested value.
The homes the district purchased on Tuesday included two on Middle Avenue, two on Seventh Street and two on Sixth Street.
The sale prices for the six homes ranged from $62,000 to $100,000  — all told, the district paid about $530,000 for the six.
To date, the district has paid more than $1.2 million for nearly 20 properties in the target area. There are just over 50 properties owned by more than 30 people. Many of the properties are rentals, vacant land or commercial buildings.
John Keyes-Walker, Elyria Schools’ attorney, said he’s confident the district will still be on target for staying within its $3 million for all the properties.
District officials on Tuesday also put the finishing touches on the sale of $45 million in bonds, which will provide the district with money for construction, school officials said.
A detailed timeline for the construction process — as well as construction plans — are expected to be ironed out by September, though Elyria residents can expect monthly updates from the construction companies and the district starting Aug. 1, said Paul Rigda, Elyria Schools superintendent.
Contact Shawn Foucher at 329-7197 or sfoucher@chroniclet.com.