Tonawanda News

Local News

November 14, 2012

City school board to sell Central School

CITY OF TONAWANDA — The City of Tonawanda school board heard two presentations from realtors vying for the chance to sell Central School Tuesday night at the body’s regular meeting. 

The Clinton Street school hasn’t been used as a full-time educational facility in over a decade and has recently housed a teachers’ center, the district’s archives and The Historical Society of the Tonawandas.

Those groups, in addition to computers and furniture stored in the building, will be moved out by Jan. 1, according to Director of Facilities Paul Maziarz.

The board is currently in the process of choosing a realtor to sell the property and get it off the district’s hands. 

MJ Peterson realtor Robert A. Liebeck and Hunt Commercial Real Estate representative David W. Supon presented their proposals to the board Tuesday. 

Liebeck stressed his 35 years of experience, which includes the sale of a school in the Ken-Ton district, as well as a school owned by the Buffalo Catholic Diocese.

Liebeck was realistic about the property’s chances and did mention a few concerns he has about the building, namely that it may be too small for a developer to “get excited about it.”  

Liebeck said it is much easier to get federal funding for low-income and senior housing when the facility is closer to 100,000 square feet. In comparison, Central School is around less than 30,000 square feet. 

“There are buyers out there,” Liebeck said. “But it won’t sell for the assessed value.”

Liebeck didn’t discuss a specific listing price, but Supon advised the board list Central for around the same price Highland Elementary is currently listed at by a private owner — around $325,000 — and said the properties are likely very similar. 

“We can discuss exactly what figure you want it listed as,” Supon said. “But I wouldn’t want to set it too high off the bat with the difficult market of schools and churches right now.” 

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