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Historic Newark schoolhouse held at Ardenwood Farm may be demolished

By Chris DeBenedetti
Tuesday, May 21st, 2013 at 2:09 pm in Uncategorized.

NEWARK — City officials are considering whether to demolish a 129-year-old schoolhouse, even though it is one of Newark’s few buildings to be designated a historical resource.

The proposed demolition of Mowry’s Landing School, which was built in 1884, would save tax dollars but anger local preservationists.

Newark would like to save the one-room building, but restoring it might cost as much as $850,000, said Ray Collier, Newark’s chief building official. “Our first choice is to sell it or give it to a nonprofit, but we haven’t been able to do that,” he said. “Restoring it will cost a lot, and we have no practical use.”

While the City Council considers those options, its members voted unanimously last week to pay for part of an environmental impact report that will study the effects of getting rid of it. Newark will share the report’s costs with the East Bay Regional Park District, which has housed the 19th-century school room at Ardenwood Historic Farm in Fremont. The single-story, wood-frame structure — which is 26 feet by 42 feet, with a rectangular shape — was built near what is now NewPark Mall.

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  • Tony Irvington

    Chris,
    Why don’t you ask Mr. Collier to break down that $850 thousand for us?! Also, ask him who’s been charging Newark for the “designated historical resource” to sit over at Ardenwood?

    Maybe Chris, you should suggest to Mr.Collier
    that before the council spends $20,000 to create a report that allows them to not feel ashamed or even responsible for deciding to do what they ALREADY have decided to do…

    They allow you to broadcast what Mr. Collier himself calls Newark officials “first choice” as to a solution for the 129-year-old school.

    That Newark can find somebody who they could give it to for free.

  • Jasper Stein

    To Fix This Problem Fire Ray Collier restoring it might cost as much as $850,000, said Ray Collier, Pure Unadulterated Bullshit. This is just one symptom of a incept Newark City Council and Mayor.

    Definition
    1.
    without skill or aptitude for a particular task or assignment; maladroit: He is inept at mechanical tasks. She is inept at dealing with people.

    2.
    generally awkward or clumsy; haplessly incompetent

    NEWARK CITY COUNCIL AND MAYOR fit this description to a T