Rumor has it that Scottsdale School District is considering the possibility of closing their main administration office near 44th St and Indian School. Some feel that selling will be better than renovating because of cost and because it is on the outskirts of the district’s boundaries and therefore not the most efficient location.
Selling or repurposing old buildings is not out of the norm for school districts, however for Scottsdale, it has been nearly 20 years since they last sold a property and it was apparently a painful experience. In 1983 Scottsdale High School closed its doors and the district asked for the approval of voters to sell the building and land. The first vote was an astounding no. It was finally sold in portions between 1989 and 1995.
The selling of the district administration office is expected to be much less emotional, but only time and a public vote will tell. An interesting side note that we may have an eventual affect on property values in Scottsdale is that 13 out of their current 31 schools are at 65% or less capacity. For those that don’t know, the district has announced the closure of one of those- Tonelea Elementary School. It is in the heart of an Old Town Scottsdale neighborhood and many of the surrounding families are asking for it to be renovated instead of having to relocate their children. With the nearby Yavapai Elementary under its 65% capacity though, it is more likely that students will be moved instead of spending around 13 million to renovate the 56 year old campus.
With a fairly active real estate market in Scottsdale, it does make me wonder how so many of the schools could be at such low capacity… Are families getting priced out? Is Scottsdale more attractive to investors and vacationers than it is to those with young children? Is it really turning into a retirement community or are the lower attendance numbers fairly typical for many cities across America? I would love to hear your ideas and comments.
For more information about the school district information, you can check out azcentral.com