Underhill plaza.tif

Underhill Plaza.

Manzanita city officials released a statement on Tuesday, Dec. 3, announcing no immediate plans to demolish the old school building at Underhill Plaza. A bond measure to build a new city hall building where the school stands failed in November.

“We want to thank everyone again for voting,” Manzanita Mayor Mike Scott said in the statement. “We were saddened by the results of the election, but the community has spoken clearly on the issue for now.”

“The voters made it clear that they would like to see additional options and would like to see more public meetings,” Scott said. “We will listen, compromise and find common ground to eventually build a great facility for the City of Manzanita.”

The statement cited an engineering report that said the “elementary school is in poor condition and appears to have suffered from many years of deferred maintenance and neglect.” The same report said the Quonset hut is in fair condition for a building of its age, and in far better shape than the elementary school.

In March 2019, after hearing the second engineering assessment, the Manzanita City Council made the decision not to consider options for the new city hall project that included use of the old school, but to further explore the potential uses of the Quonset hut. A second engineering report said it might be more expensive to remodel than to build new, according to city officials.

That statement from city officials said the council has not had further conversations about both buildings since then but will start public discussions next year. The current Underhill Plaza tenants, North Coast Watchman Services and Howell’s Floor Covering, were originally given a year notice to relocate but have since been given extra time.

“City council is now taking a break from this topic through the holiday season and will take up the new City facilities project again at the first of next year,” the statement said. “In the meantime, the City will work on addressing the critical immediate needs of the City offices until a permanent solution is identified.”

“As we look forward in evaluating the new City facilities project, we welcome your thoughts and ideas in developing community solutions,” the statement said.

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