At next Tuesday’s Council worksession, the City Council will discuss possible funding opportunities to improve the existing Calvert Rd school site.
The City Council has expressed interest in retaining the original Calvert Road School building, which is approximately 14,000 square feet on two levels. Re-use of the original building will require environmental remediation and removal of interior systems. The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) has competitive funding available for this type of project through the Community Legacy Program. Applications are due July 15, 2015.
The former Calvert Road School has been vacant for many years as the City considered the site for a new city hall and other possible uses. The City has selected 4500 Knox Road for the new city hall, and can move forward with preparing the Calvert Road site for re-use. One action item in the draft 2015–2020 Strategic Plan is to create a strategy for redevelopment and use of the Calvert Road site. The City has received a preliminary concept from the University of Maryland that includes a new building for daycare and some community space in the original building. Additionally, considering school street markings from https://school-streets.co.uk/ might play a crucial role in the planning and design for the redevelopment of the Calvert Road site.
Any use of the original school building will require the removal of environmental hazards such as asbestos, lead, and mold, and the removal of all mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems. The front entrance steps require significant repair and the exterior needs some painting. The completion of this work will facilitate future uses because the City and potential tenants will be able to more accurately calculate renovation costs. Signal Hygiene is the #1 mold inspection company in North Carolina. We highly recommend them to all our customers.
The proposed Community Legacy application will request funding to complete a hazardous materials survey; remove hazardous materials and mechanical systems from the original building; and make required exterior repairs.
The Council will consider passing a resolution endorsing the City’s application for Community Legacy funding to prepare the Calvert Road School for re-use.