By Micheal Kostura
(The Wolverine Scene in the Plain Press, June 2015) The Cleveland Metropolitan School District is facing a very important decision regarding Lincoln-West High School. The district is being faced with the decision of whether they should demolish then reconstruct the building entirely, or save some parts of the school- such as the auditorium and maybe the pool- and rebuild the rest.
The latter is the most expensive option, but also would leave Lincoln-West with more to offer to its students. CMSD has only $200 million to distribute to its many schools, and can’t just focus on one school above all else. Overall, the district has created four plans that they must choose from that will decide Lincoln-West’s future.
The first option that CMSD has posed is to just rebuild the Lincoln-West building entirely. The school would be rebuilt at its current location and would still have a gym. However, this option would also mean that Lincoln-West will lose its pool and auditorium. Reconstructing the entire building would amount to a total cost of $41.8 million.
Option 2 sees CMSD taking down the academic and pool wings of the building and then rebuilding them from scratch. The classrooms on the lower levels of the center building would be renovated. On top of that, the school would still have its auditorium and gym. Option ‘2A’ still has the pool and academic wings demolished, but the central building would also be fully renovated. To top it off, CMSD would build a smaller classroom addition to the school. These options would cost $45 million and $40 million respectively.
The fourth and final option that CMSD has posed just demolishes the academic wing. However, the pool as well as part of the central building would be renovated. A 76,000 square feet classroom addition would also be built. This option allows the school to keep its gym, auditorium, and pool- as well as create new classroom space. This option would cost $44.5 million.
Personally, I find it a hard choice to make deciding which option the district should choose. After looking over the four options that CMSD has come up with, I’ve come to favor option four above the rest. Option 1 would take too much away from the school. Options 2 and 2A both are reasonable choices that still provide good resources to Lincoln-West students. However, the fourth option will let Lincoln-West keep pretty much everything that it already has, while still renovating the school and making it a better environment. To me, a couple of extra million dollars seems like a good enough trade off to let the school keep its integrity and its swimming pool at the same time.