No takers yet on Tracyton, Seabeck elementary buildings
April 30, 2012 · 11:41 AM
Five years after closing the Tracyton and Seabeck elementary school buildings, the Central Kitsap School District is still seeking takers to lease the spaces.
For now, the district plans to sit on the facilities.
“If you know anybody who needs an elementary building, let me know,” joked David McVicker, the district’s director of business and operations. The district closed the elementary schools in the summer of 2007, and hasn’t received any offers since sending out requests for proposals in 2008. McVicker said the district most likely won’t sell the facilities, because they qualify for matching funds from the state if the school ever decides to renovate. He said the buildings, both of which are more than 50 years old, need roughly $6 million in substantial improvements and asbestos removal if they ever change hands.
Tracyton Elementary was built in 1944. The district is also forming a long-term facilities plan, and the campuses could prove useful, McVicker said.
The Discovery Depot Montessori preschool rents a trailer on the Tracyton site, which provides up to $1,600 of revenue each month and helps ward away vandals, McVicker said.
School board member Eric Greene, whose district includes Seabeck, said he hopes the district has a “big conversation” about demographics and the real needs over the next 10 years.
“For instance, do we have enough or too many elementaries?” he said.
A local realtor, Shane Ison, owner of Ison Realty, thinks the district isn't taking the right approach by seeking renters.
"Lease it to who, to do what?" Ison said. "I can't tell you how much leasable manufacturing, retail and office space is available right now."
Ison said he doesn't understand why the district doesn't sell the properties.
"If it sits vacant, all it does is deteriorate. It's like standing over an open fire and throwing $20 bills over it," he said.