Author Topic: Warren High School Facade - quick tour  (Read 6808 times)

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Offline JRC

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Re: Warren High School Facade - quick tour
« Reply #35 on: November 04, 2009, 04:53:14 PM »
This subject bugs me a lot.  We have many local Catholic School buildings that have been continually operating in buildings that were often built before the 1920's.  The difference between them and the public schools is that the Catholic schools take care of the buildings and conduct incremental improvements.  The public schools defer maintenance for decades until it is cheaper to demolish.  For ADA you add an elevator inside and a ramp outside and retrofit some bathrooms.  It is done all the time.

I've only been in one Catholic school, so I could be way off.  But I suspect that the technology in their buildings is sorely lacking. (in addition to environmental controls, and antiquated/inefficient mechanical equipment)  A coworker went to a Catholic elementary school, and she still jokes about the "asbestos" dust they found on their desks every morning.

Making a building ADA accessible isn't always as simple as you describe.  I know of an old building in a neighboring school district that was built with a few different levels, and it's not possible to provide accessibility to all of these different levels.

Offline presOhio

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Re: Warren High School Facade - quick tour
« Reply #36 on: December 12, 2009, 05:46:24 PM »
Now I understand where you're coming from regarding the old WHHS facade.  However, I still disagree.

I would not call building new schools with state of the art technology, comfortable rooms, and good lighting, regardless of how they look, a waste of taxpayer money.  The vast majority of buildings that have been demolished with the help of the OSFC weren't historic or architecturally significant, anyway.

Yes, they are a waste of taxpayer money. In almost every one of these situations, the estimated cost of renovation to meet modern educational standards -- including the technology, comfortable rooms and good lighting to which you refer -- was substantially below the cost of demolition and replacement. In Cleveland alone saving a handful of older buildings would have saved the district an additional $60 million. And, in almost every one of these situations, taxpayers are saddled with buildings that have dramatically shorter life expectancies than the buildings they replaced.

As for the quality of architecture, the loss has been a pervasive and crippling one across the state. In smaller communities, the school was typically the only piece of significant local architecture. Buildings do not derive their historic value or integrity simply because they are the product of a well-known architect. These buildings were the heart and soul of almost every Ohio community under 25,000 or so in population.
"Of this I am quite sure, that if we open a quarrel between the past and the present, we shall find that we have lost the future." - Sir Winston Churchill

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