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Published: Monday, 3/5/2001

Edon might take village offices to school

EDON, Ohio - This village's municipal offices may find a home in the old schoolhouse.

Ground is a long way from being broken to build the planned school building for the Edon-Northwest District. But officials are pondering what to do with the old hodge-podge of connected buildings.

The village is welcome to the building arrangements can come together, District Superintendent Mike Struble said.

Mayor John Winright said there is a possibility that the building, after some work, could house the village's administrative offices, the Edon public library and the Edon Senior Center.

The village offices now are in a building that Mayor Winright says is 75 to 100 years old and in need of repair.

The school in town is an 85,000-square-foot tangle of connected structures built in 1935, 1956, 1964, and 1997. The older sections are too decrepit to use or would be too expensive to renovate, Mayor Winright said.

“We are interested in using the building, under certain circumstances,'' he said, but he said the village does not want to take over ownership and become a landlord to the old building.

Parts of the building likely would be demolished, leaving 35,000-40,000 square feet of usable facility, the mayor said. A study by Bell Engineers of Bryan is to be finished in two weeks, to show the feasibility of demolition and rehabilitation for town use.

“We know our old offices have to be replaced before too long,'' Mr. Winright said. “If it's feasible, we'd like to move offices into the old school. I'd love to have the building for all those uses. It would be a real asset to the community.''

The school is to be completed by fall of 2003 or January, 2004.

Superintendent Struble said a group of about 30 community people have met to discuss the old building's use.

“I'm looking for the best deal for the board of education and the community,'' he said. “We'd be happy to have the village take it for offices and a library and senior center use it too. “

The separate Northwest Elementary School building has potential for being sold, he said.

If older parts of the in-town building are torn down, the newer part would have to be renovated and brought into conformance with state codes regarding handicapped accessibility and restroom facilities, Mr. Winright said.

“We know, for example, it would need automatic doors and a sprinkler system. All that would cost money, so we'd start searching for grants.''

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