DEARBORN, Mo. — Residents took notice when a large part of Dearborn’s history started to come down early this week.
Demolition work began on the North Platte Junior High building Monday, July 24 with nearly the entire structure taken down in one day. As of Tuesday morning, only the entryway remained standing.
The building’s history dates to 1930, and originally, it served as Dearborn High School and then the original North Platte High School. Current school officials announced that bricks from the structure will be sold for $1 apiece with a limited supply.
Interested persons can call (816) 450-3511 to inquire about bricks still available.
The 1930 portion of the building became North Platte Junior High after the current high school addition was built on the campus. However, structural issues were evident, and district officials marked the structure for demolition when deciding to place a no-tax increase proposal on the April ballot.
This is just the first part of the district’s plans for facilities.
On April 4, voters overwhelmingly approved Proposition 2, allowing the district to plan for about $6.2 million worth of capital projects with the first priority to replace the junior high school. The district will maintain its 99-cent levy for debt services fund that is being used to pay off the projects that were voter approved in the fall of 2009, including the new North Platte Intermediate School in Edgerton, Mo.
Other projects include roof repairs or replacements and completing smaller improvements to the schools in Dearborn and North Platte Elementary School in Camden Point, Mo. The current projects are expected to be paid for in full by 2025.
Construction of the new junior high is scheduled to begin in late fall and is expected to be completed before the start of the 2018-2019 school year. The other projects are being scheduled to go along with the construction of the new building and a majority of the projects are expected to be completed summer of 2018.
Mobile classroom units will be brought in to accommodate students for the upcoming school year. North Platte superintendent Karl Matt also expects the work to cause some issues with parking on the campus.
Other projects that will take place in the near future include high school roof repair/replacement ($375,000 estimate) and repairs/renovations and upgrades of the high school. In addition, the elementary school will receive foundation work, roof repairs/replacements and other renovations.
Both the high school and elementary school would have HVAC upgrades.
Total cost of the projects is estimated at $6.65 million with the current tax rate expected to generate about $6.2 million over 12 years to go with close to another half million from a Missouri Department of Energy grant.
Work began after the school year to remove hazardous material from the site. Equipment and fencing were in place on Friday, July 21, and the trees on the south side of the building were trimmed away for the work to begin.
The actual demolition began in the early hours Monday with two machines cutting through the building on the west and east sides of the building, leaving the middle section of the 87-year-old building intact for the final stage.
Clean up will continue throughout the week in order to clear the worksite for the next phase of the project.