October 21, 2014

Elyria
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52°F
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Officials consider future of empty Carlisle Township school

The former East Carlisle School on Grafton Road sits vacant Monday. STEVE MANHEIM/CHRONICLE

The former East Carlisle School on Grafton Road sits vacant Monday. STEVE MANHEIM/CHRONICLE

The fate of East Carlisle School on Grafton Road is up in the air while Carlisle Township trustees ponder whether to renovate or demolish the aging building.

The 85-year-old building is no longer suitable for public use, officials said.

“We are trying to determine the most efficient way of taking care of that building,” Trustee Berry Taylor said. “It sustained water damage over the winter from the third floor all the way down. We have had people come out to look at it, and everyone has said it’s not a good idea to put a lot of money into.”

Cracks have damaged the foundation and water infiltrated support blocks, he said.

The township owns the school and the eight acres it sits on. The building most recently was a community meeting space. The gymnasium was rented out to the public.

But once water damage was found last year, the building has sat unused. The township does minimally maintain it with utilities, keeping the grass cut and boarding up any broken windows.

Trustee Bob White said several ballfields behind the school are not being used, either.

Taylor said he hasn’t made up his mind about the building. It hasn’t been appraised.

“The county auditor has it listed for $1 million-plus,” he said. “But that’s kind of ridiculous. We’re not getting a million dollars for it. I want to see figures before I figure out what to do.”

So far, no one has expressed interest in the building, Taylor said.

White said trustees will make a decision in the next couple of months. The school, once owned and operated by Midview Schools, closed in 2005.

The township purchased the former school after that for $200,000 to prevent the parcel from being annexed to Elyria. The funds to purchase the building came from inheritance taxes.

Contact Lisa Roberson at 329-7121 or lroberson@chroniclet.com. Follow her on Twitter @LisaRobersonCT.


  • Sis Delish

    Another example of wasted taxes–purchase a property, then allow it to deteriorate and admit that you did just that.

    Do Township Officials know if asbestos is In there as we’ll? Lead Paint?

    • Summer Smart

      how could they not know? what a waste. i wonder what the residents think?

      • stillsleepyeyes

        I think the residents didn’t want to be annex into Elyria…………..

        • Sis Delish

          Residents?

          • stillsleepyeyes

            Yes that would be the people that live in and around that particular area in which Elyria wanted to annex at that time to increase their tax base and that time…….

          • Summer Smart

            maybe it was the trustees that didn’t want to annex…

          • stillsleepyeyes

            And who want to be annexed into Elyria? City hall fighting like spoiled children, the court judges doing as they please.

          • Bill

            Trust me. It was the residents who didn’t want the annex with the trustees taking all the necessary steps to ensure that didn’t happen.

  • Sue Lawson

    What I don’t understand is why Carlisle Township had to purchase it, with tax payer money, after the property owners had already paid for it.

    • John Davidson

      It was a money grab by the Midview School District. If I remember correctly the screwed over Grafton Township also.

      • Sue Lawson

        Not surprising. Thank you.

  • Pablo Jones

    Wow. In usable condition 10 years earlier and has fallen into disrepair. And cities say they are struggling because the state phased out the inheritance tax. Seems more like they are struggling by wasting money.

    What are they to do? Fixing it would be a waste. A smaller structure could be built if they wanted to have a community meeting space or a gym. 8 acres can be anywhere between 4-24 lots they could sell. That means they could tear down the building and build something else much of it paid for with the sale of part of the land.

    • Sis Delish

      The same Trustees who didn’t keep the place habitable would most likely ensure the property could not be used in an efficient manner via Zoning restrictions, etc.

      This place was a Gem in its day, and the local Hot Stove Baseball League called the grassy areas their home. Didn’t need fancy lights, fences or landscaping. I agree with Scunnered’s comments below. Buildings like this are to be prized and maintained. Obviously, those elected to manage the Township’s assets think and act differently. After all, its not Their Money.

      • Bill

        Buildings like this should be prized but in today’s economy that is becoming less feasible. Townships/city’s only have so much to work with unless you start taxing people to death.
        This group of trustees have been at the helm for some time now and have always been fiscally responsible. The building was very old and they did as well as they could. I have no problem with the Carlisle Township trustee’s. I mean look at North Eaton.

        • Sis Delish

          I recall the similar School Building in Eaton is now in the Private Sector, serving as an office for a local Waste Disposal Corp.?

          What restrictions do you know of would preclude the East Carlisle building from the same? (Not necessarily the same industry, etc,)

        • Summer Smart

          if they had been fiscally responsible, why hadn’t they made repairs over the years to make it more than allow it to become what it has? how much money has been wasted? how much has been brought in by only being able to rent out the gym? the building is huge and the utilities alone must be high to keep it just maintained. fiscally responsible would have been bringing the building up to code to do rent out the rooms or more with the 8 acres. how much was spent on the taj mah hall over there? it seems that is the only thing the trustees have spend money on.

          • Bill

            You must be one of those people who believe there is a money making machine that will just keep churning out cash at a whim.
            Being fiscally responsible is doing what you can with what you have and pouring money into a building that old is not being fiscally responsible. I do not want them coming to me to ask for that money through taxes. You want to donate go right ahead.

          • Guest

            isn’t that what they did for the fire department and isn’t that what they are proposing doing for the road department in november? what are they doing with our money now that they have to keep asking for more but we aren’t seeing results?

      • stillsleepyeyes

        Would it be in better hands if Elyria had control of it………

        • Sis Delish

          Not an issue. If the Trustees ponied up $200k to purchase it, where was the budget to maintain?

          A homeowner would be scrutinized by their neighbors if they purchased a home and let it fall into disrepair. How do Government entities avoid the same criticism?

          • stillsleepyeyes

            Is the issue, it was bought as so the city of Elyria couldn’t annex Carlisle township as so they had to have so much land to be registered as a township. Hence it was bought. But probably not knowing on how to support it. if it wasn’t bought it would be a part of the failing Elyria system in which do not take care of there properties as noticed. the government as we know get a separate set of rules as per the common folk as we all know. not fair but every where…….

  • Scunnered

    Funny how all over the world you see buildings being upkept that are hundreds of years older than this. But go ahead and have some unimaginative person decide to demolish history. What a crying shame.

  • Me

    How about fixing it up for the homeless VETERANS? Just a thought..