PIQUA — After saying the final goodbye to the Nicklin Learning Center at the building commemoration in April, the building has started demolition effective on Monday.
The process started after May 29, the last day of school in the Piqua City School district. Salvageable items such as books and school supplies that were needed for the new Springcreek Primary or Washington Primary buildings were transported to the new buildings.
The building had to be emptied before the first week of June to begin the asbestos removal process. The asbestos consultant goes through the building to determine what items are affected by asbestos and then are properly disposed.
“(Demolition process) has gone very well, no real complications or anything, nothing unusual,” said Curt South, business coordinator and project manager for the buildings. “With anything, there’s always some things we have to go through … nothing that slows anything down. Contractors have been great to work with.”
The EPA and health department collect samples of the air in the building and once it is determined to be safe, demolition begins. The building is expected to be dismantled entirely by mid-August. Dirt will be put in to level the ground and grass will be planted. What the land will be used for in the future is yet to be determined.
“It is up to the school district what to do with the land, which is on our radar, but we don’t have any set plans for our sites yet,” South said. “When we have the contract closed out, then we will decide what to do with the sites.”
There will not be an auction for leftover items from the building, as remaining items are under the demolition contractor’s salvage rights. Under this regulation, the contractor has the right to do as he wishes for remaining items, whether it is giving residential appliances to a secondhand appliance store or recycling items in other ways.
Giving the demolition contractor rights to these items as opposed to the district holding an auction saves the district money.
“Our anticipated savings for providing the demolition contractors salvage rights is $80,000 for the entire project,” Superintendent Rick Hanes said in an email.
“If the district would hold an auction, there’s a cost associated to that,” South said. “The school would receive proceeds, but that number is less than the contractor salvaging (items).”
South explains the kind of perspective that taxpayers and the community should have on the situation.
“It’s always difficult to see what taxpayers paid for,” he said. “They see stuff in the pile and say ‘(The district) should sell these things’ … the way to look at it is that (items are) already sold to the demolition contractor for him to do what he wants with it.”
Nicklin is officially the first building to come down. Following suit will be Favorite Hill Primary, Wilder Intermediate, and Bennett Intermediate. Those buildings are currently in the asbestos removal stage, with an EPA inspection scheduled in the next couple of days.
“Here in the very near future, you will start to see the buildings come down,” South said.
Reach Amy Barger at (937) 451-3340