Former D50 schools to be torn down

Ashley Reimers
Baker Elementary School in District 50 is scheduled for asbestos abatement in late July followed by demolition. The building hasn’t been used as a school for several years and is the victim of substantial damage and copper piping theft.
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Two buildings no longer used as schools will be demolished in Adams County School District 50.

During the school board’s June 23 meeting, members voted unanimously to approve two contracts for the asbestos abatement and demolition of Baker Elementary School and Clear Lake Middle School.

Both in Denver, Baker at 3555 W. 64th Ave., and Clear Lake at 1940 Elmwood Lane, the buildings haven’t been used for many years and are no longer registered with the state of Colorado as public schools. James Duffy, chief operations officer for the district, said the buildings are deteriorating quickly and are a liability rather than an asset to the district.

“Both buildings have sustained substantial damage from thefts resulting in the loss of copper piping,” he said. “There’s also been water damage and we no longer allow our personnel in the building for more than half-a-hour without a respirator.”

Removing the buildings will happen in two phases, asbestos abatement followed by demolition. The board approved a $1.387 million contact with Complete Abatement Services for abatement services on both buildings. A $355,410 contract was also approved for the demo of both buildings.

Board member Dino Valente commented on the importance of the project and said although it wasn’t easy to coming to the decision to tear down the buildings, it was a significant one.

“The manner in which these buildings have been directed to close several years ago has caused them to fall into the state of decay they are in,” he said. “This is the right thing to do for those two neighborhoods within in our community who have looked at those eye sores long enough. I’m very happy to see this being done.”

Asbestos abatement is projected to begin in a few weeks at Clear Lake Middle School followed by the start of the process at Baker Elementary by late July. The abatement process can take up 13 weeks. The district will be placing signage in both areas and will be notifying neighbors in writing about the project. Once the buildings are down, the district will seed with ground cover.