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Shaler Area School Board hears more options for primary schools

An architecture firm on Wednesday presented the Shaler Area School Board with more options on what to do with the district’s five aging primary schools.

Greer Hayden, president of HHSDR Architects and Engineers, based in Sharon and Pittsburgh, added two more options to the three revealed in August’s feasibility/facilities study presentation.

The new options are to renovate Burchfield and Marzolf primaries, close Reserve, Jeffery and Rogers primaries and build a new facility at the Rogers site or to renovate Burchfield, close Reserve, Jeffery, Rogers and Marzolf and build new schools at Rogers and Marzolf.

The fourth option would cost approximately $55.9 million and take seven years to complete. The fifth option would cost $67.1 million and take nine years to complete.

The firm’s original three options were to renovate all five primary schools, close Reserve Primary and renovate the remaining primaries or close Reserve and Jeffery primaries and renovate the remaining primary schools.

The school district, which has about 4,600 students, is projected to grow to around 4,900 by 2020, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

More than 50 people attended the meeting, and a few spoke in defense of keeping Reserve Primary.

“It’s an asset, said Jim Helfrich, a Reserve commissioner. “It’s more than just a physical space. And I just wanted to let you know that it’s a great asset, and if there’s some way to keep it, we’d appreciate it.”

Rachel Farkas is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-772-6364 or [email protected]


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