by Maureen Neeley
Last year, and then again as recently as May 1, the Long Beach Unified School Board voted unanimously to begin the death knell for our city’s amazing collection of historic school buildings, starting with the demolitions of Cecil B. DeMille School (1956 – Kenneth Wing, Architect), Newcomb School (1963 – Hugh Gibbs, Architect) and Theodore Roosevelt Elementary School (1935 – George Kahrs, Architect).
Funded by Measure K, the LBUSD is undertaking a plan to bring our schools up to today’s educational standards. On the surface, this seems like a great idea and one which we can all support. A deeper review, however, reveals that the district may be taking the easy way out. The plan for the future seems to adhere to the traditional and uninspiring scorched-earth policy of demolish and re-build versus renovate and rehabilitate.
The current (2008) Facilities Master Plan calls for the demolition or major renovation of over 30 schools. Many of these are historically and architecturally significant, considered historic resources under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).
Read the entire article via Long Beach Post – OP-ED: Should We Really Be Tearing Down Our Old Schools?.