LA MARQUE

Crews today will begin demolishing old, now-vacant school buildings in La Marque that officials say are too dilapidated for cost-effective repair.

The Texas City Independent School District announced this week the demolition timeline.

Crews today will start tearing down Highland and Simms elementary schools and an old house the former La Marque school district loaned to teachers, spokeswoman Melissa Tortorici said.

In May, construction crews will raze Inter-City Elementary School, the district said. The building that housed the Head Start program will be demolished in June, according to the district.

Demolition crews will perform asbestos abatement at each facility ahead of tearing them down.

The school district annexed neighboring La Marque Independent School District in July after the state ordered it would be closed and absorbed by another district, citing consecutive years of substandard performance on state academic or financial standards.

The Texas City school board hired three construction crews to demolish the remaining vacant buildings: AAR Incorporated, Cherry Demolition and Sitek Omni. Demolition is estimated to cost about $1.5 million, Tortorici said.

The projects slated to be demolished in the next few months are the last remaining vacant buildings in the former La Marque school district, Tortorici said.

The district had considered the possibility of restoring some of the buildings, but assessments indicated it would be too expensive to bring them to standard, Tortorici said.

The demolition of the old and vacant buildings will give the city the ability to move forward on new developments that could put those properties back on the tax rolls, Mayor Pro Tem Keith Bell said.

“We’re keeping the line of communication open with TCISD,” Bell said. “As those building come off the TCISD property list we want to put them back on the tax rolls in meaningful ways.”

City officials haven’t made any decisions about what those new developments might be, Bell said. But it seems likely schools demolished in a residential neighborhood will go toward future housing, he said. The city could look at commercial zoning for those in areas that might allow it, he said.

“We’re definitely keeping our ears open,” Bell said.

Marissa Barnett: 409-683-5257; marissa.barnett@galvnews.com.

(10) comments

Randy Chapman

This has been too long coming. I'm sure "The Eagles Nest" will have some negative comment why this shouldn't be done. Times change, and we've lived in the past too long now. They aren't historic buildings and are costing the district too much to even keep safe.

Charlotte Wood

I'm sure but great move.

RonShelby
Ron Shelby

Good move. "Rip the bandaid off" and get it done.

Charlotte Wood

Yes it is.

Charlotte Wood

I know LMISD put a lot of money into these for remodel in years past but don't want them sitting there like Lamar did & just get into deplorable shape. If not being used & too costly to redo get rid of it.

PD Hyatt

One has to wonder how many of these schools could have been torn down with the 300.000 thousand that LMISD board threw away trying to keep their friends jobs and their jobs.... One has to wonder.... Of course I doubt that they care as they don't think that it also came out of their pockets....

MissionaryMan
Walter Manuel

We can all thank Nakisha Paul and the rest of her wrecking crew that was ousted off the LMISD board by TEA.

And to think that Nakisha Paul, the tired Eagle's Neat along with their 33%'ers thinks that Nakisha deserves to be on the TCISD BOT???

Nakisha Paul did enough damage to the children and LMISD property she should NEVER be allowed to help destroy another school district like she did to LMISD.

Jose' Boix

Somehow these words of George Bernard Shaw seem appropriate: “Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”

MissionaryMan
Walter Manuel

Bingo Mr. Boix, so very well stated!

Give this gentleman a cigar! [thumbup]

MissionaryMan
Walter Manuel

"The demolition of the old and vacant buildings will give the city the ability to move forward on new developments that could put those properties back on the tax rolls, Mayor Pro Tem Keith Bell said".

“We’re keeping the line of communication open with TCISD,” Bell said. “As those building come off the TCISD property list we want to put them back on the tax rolls in meaningful ways.”

"City officials haven’t made any decisions about what those new developments might be, Bell said. But it seems likely schools demolished in a residential neighborhood will go toward future housing, he said. The city could look at commercial zoning for those in areas that might allow it, he said".

“We’re definitely keeping our ears open,” Bell said.

Ummmm excuse me Mr. Bell, but apparently instead of "keeping your ears open", you may want to clean them out and "listen" to what TCISD plans to do with "their" property once the schools are grazed.

Another credible news source had an interview with TCISD's current superintendent and their plans for the land is much different than that of yours.

TCISD plans to eventually build new schools back on some of the existing properties including on the current Simms site and then look at future development opportunities as TCISD sees fit.

BTW, Mayor Pro-Tem Bell, this slip up on your part looks exactly like the shoddy work of how the Eagle's Nest and their ousted friends on the LMISD BOT rolled in the end.

Remember Mr. Bell, it's imperative that you do your homework before you commit the city of LM to something that they no longer have control over and making promises to the taxpayers of LM that you can't keep.

There's enough false information being spread from the former LMISD BOT and theiur supporters, the last thing the city of LM needs right now is one of their council members trying to pee on someone's leg and convince them that it's raining when in fact it isn't. [whistling]

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