Greencastle-Antrim School District withdraws offer to buy Foremost building

JOYCE F. NOWELL, Echo Pilot

Plans by the Greencastle-Antrim School District to buy the Foremost building just outside of town for the relocation of its administrative offices have fallen through. This development puts the district back at square one in attempting to ease the need for classroom space.

Dr. C. Greg Hoover said Wednesday evening that the March proposal made to Foremost Industries Inc. for the purchase of the 2375 Buchanan Trial W. office building has been recalled and the district is actively seeking an alternative.

“We negotiated back and forth and put in a final offer,” said Hoover. “They accepted it, but then they had some other difficulties. We knew that a lien was put on the property.

“We couldn’t go forward with that. It wouldn’t be prudent.”

Hoover said the district’s offer was $570,000 for the building that would have provided space for the administrative personnel. The move would allow the current administrative wing in the elementary school to be converted into classrooms needed to handle a burgeoning student population in third-, fourth- and fifth-grades.

“There was a sales agreement, but we never signed it because the legal issues came up. We withdrew our offer. It wasn’t in the best interest of the school district to pursue it.”

The district planned to pay for the Foremost building through current debt service without a tax increase.

Hoover said the renovation of the current administrative wing will proceed in spite of the snag. The superintendent talked about the development while standing in the middle school library, a possible short-term solution to the space issues.

“We can use this space for awhile if we have to because the big population won’t hit here for a couple of years,” said Hoover. “We are already doing the energy project here, so we can come into the library now and get this done.

“We could use it for a year or two until the big classes start coming over. We don’t want to have to do that. We want to look at other places first. If we don’t find a place, we would come here. We’ll see what happens.”

Hoover, who last week announced his retirement effective in June, is anxious to get a plan in place.

“I want to see this through so we can move forward,” he said.

“We are quickly looking. We are looking at some other properties.”