Why not consider a brand-new building?

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

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My question for the District 200 working group is, "What would it cost to raze the high school entirely and build from scratch?" This might sound absurd, but if I understand the 5-step proposal correctly, you're talking about spending a quarter-billion dollars or more and ending up with a kludge — a mish-mash of 100-year-old, 50-year-old and new facilities, many of which surely have exhausted their useful life even with rehabbing.

And don't answer my question by saying it's logistically impossible — logistics are just a question of money and inconvenience. I wouldn't be shocked if the better and more cost-effective, long-term solution isn't a complete demolition and an energy-efficient, footprint-efficient, modern, educationally-appropriate, brand-new structure. 

The impossibility in my view might be selling a very long-term solution to taxpayers who aren't inclined to think beyond 5 or 10 years.

Bob Stigger

Oak Park

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Tom MacMillan  

Posted: September 22nd, 2018 11:14 AM

When it comes to spending a quarter of a billion, they could buy up every home on a block near OPRF for probably $30 million, raze them all and then build their damn pool there.

Bill Dwyer  

Posted: September 20th, 2018 8:06 AM

I'm referring to the idea of tearing down an entire block-long building and re-building it, all while 4,000 students are being educated. Saying it's "just a question of money and inconvenience" is a flippant dismissal of the huge undertaking such a project would be, and how incredibly disruptive it would inevitably be to the educational process. And that's setting aside the price tag for the moment.

Bruce Kline  

Posted: September 19th, 2018 8:52 PM

Bill: when you say "...people nowadays have no idea what this proposal entails" are you referring to the IMAGINE proposal or Mr. Stigger's proposal?

Bill Dwyer  

Posted: September 19th, 2018 8:20 PM

As a member of the Class of 1970, the only class in OPRF history to attend the school as it was prior to October, 1966 and as it was after December 1969, during a nearly 3-year building addition process, I have to say, people nowadays have no idea what this proposal entails. Silly idea.

Tom MacMillan from Oak Park  

Posted: September 18th, 2018 5:56 PM

Or maybe we could stop pretending that the old building needs anything other than some normal maintenance, perhaps $10 million lavished around here and there. A big problem here is that we have people who want to rip and replace, who are also in charge of the maintenance, so if they do a crummy job on maintenance they can point at problems as their justification.

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