Source: Sherman Publications

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School building demolition planned

by Susan Bromley

February 06, 2013

Ortonville- The former Sherman Lifelong Learning Center at 330 Sherman Court in the village has been vacant for nearly four years. Now it will be slated for demolition.

The facility, owned by the Brandon School District, formerly housed the Brandon Alternative High School and preschool classes.

Superintendent Lorrie McMahon said the school board will seek bids for demolition of the 50-year-old building since repairs or remodeling to make the building attractive to buyers would be cost prohibitive and the district doesn't have a need for the facility.

"We aren't able to sell it as is at this time," said McMahon. "It's not a building that can be used anymore, it's too old and not up to code."

She had no guess as to how much the building will cost to demolish, but believes the property will be easier to sell if the building is gone, and if it doesn't sell, the property will still be cheaper to maintain without the building. Currently, the district has insurance and utility costs associated with the facility.

The building was put up for sale in August 2009 after construction of Oakwood Elementary was finished and students from H.T. Burt Elementary moved from that building. H.T. Burt then became the home of the preschool classes and alternative high school.

The Sherman property was initially listed at $600,000, but the price was lowered and the district accepted a proposed sale for $147,000 to a buyer interested in utilizing the property as a residential facility for patients with dementia and Alzheimer's Disease. However, that deal fell through due to restrictions on wastewater treatment.

"He couldn't make it worth his while because of having to use septic instead of sewers," said McMahon. "It would be wonderful if there were sewers."