Ex-Elementary School - Posted by Jose

Posted by john on December 20, 2006 at 16:59:27:

Why don’t you turn it into a rec center and give the courthouse employees a discount for joining?

Ex-Elementary School - Posted by Jose

Posted by Jose on December 19, 2006 at 08:29:29:

Anyone have experience on what is the best use for
an Elementary School that is now closed. 54,000 square feet on 1+ acre. Located 3/4 miles from City Court House
in a city with 20K+ population and within 30 minutes of City with 1+ million population with new Toyota Plant.
City has an aggressive Economic Development Group attracting some major businesses.

Re: Ex-Elementary School - Posted by Eric C

Posted by Eric C on December 22, 2006 at 20:48:44:

Hello Jose -

Long time, no hear.

Hope everything is well with you and yours.

In addition to the other suggestions made here, I would like to add that actually tracking down the maintenance folks (supervisor, for example) of the ISD involved might be worth the trouble (and could be a real eye-opener).

These folks – those presently working and those who’ve already retired – are wonderful sources of info. What’s more, the people who were responsible for the daily upkeep over the years will certainly know it inside and out (warts and all).

Take care,

Eric C

Re: Ex-Elementary School - Posted by Bob The Builder

Posted by Bob The Builder on December 21, 2006 at 10:41:35:

Watch out for asbestos!!! Also, we purchased a school to convert to condos, created drawings and got it approved, took about a year, and $$$, sold the plan to investors and made $$$$$$. BEWARE not for the faint at heart!!!

Re: Ex-Elementary School - Posted by Frank Chin

Posted by Frank Chin on December 20, 2006 at 04:12:53:


I bought several condos that was formerly the local High School. A new courthouse is currently being built across the street, and nearby SFH, small multis are being bought for conversion to law offices.

Frank Chin

Re: Ex-Elementary School - Posted by Jose

Posted by Jose on December 28, 2006 at 19:00:05:

Appreciate all the input. And yes there is asbestos, lead paint and most likely someone from the local Historic Organization attended school and might cause some problems, etc. etc. I have restored many old houses *1850-1950’s, but never a school or commercial property.

Appears that it might be best to table this project, but at the same time continue to look for solutions.

Hello Eric, yes I am still around and doing Okay here in the Austin area. Last time I saw you was in St. Louis, MO. Time sure does fly by fast.


Re: Ex-Elementary School - Posted by Jose

Posted by Jose on December 20, 2006 at 14:32:39:


Appreciate your response to my post.
Appears that not too many investors have worked with closed schools. Visited the Archieves and there are limited articles.

Re: Ex-Elementary School - Posted by Frank Chin

Posted by Frank Chin on December 21, 2006 at 08:11:10:


Generally, it may not be a good idea.

First, there’s quite a bit of politics involved, and it goes to some well connected developer.

Second, it takes more money than you think to do a condo conversion. The developer, the developer’s bank both went bankrupt, in the condo complex I bought into.

Third, being an older building, there’s issues of lead paint and asbestos.

Next, it got landmark designation, and replacing the tile roof, gutters itself cost a million. And you just can’t put any windows in. We had to replace the orignal windows installed by the developer, and it had to be approved windows, with the right tint.

Retrofitting heating plumbing, putting in bathrooms, kitchens, through the building cost another fortune.

By the time it was all said and done, might have been cheaper just to build a new building from scratch.

BTW, I bought another condo years ago, and it was a converted aircraft parts factory. One nice thing about older buildings is high ceilings and solid construction. In the aircraft factory, the floors are a foot of solid concrete. You can play basketball midnight, and have no problems with the folks downstairs.

Frank Chin