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DeKalb school district to demolish school
by Christine Fonville
February 25, 2014 09:50 AM | 5383 views | 1 1 comments | 24 24 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Last week, Dunwoody residents gathered at a public meeting hosted by the DeKalb County Board of Education to discuss plans for the demolition of the former Shallowford/Chamblee Middle School.

The building at 4680 Chamblee Dunwoody Road — which has been abandoned for about six years — is one of five old schools the district has made the decision to demolish.

John Wright, a representative for the school board, said the demolition projects would be funded by the county’s special purpose local option sales tax.

Atlanta Demolition won the bidding process for the demolition contract of the school as well as the old Peachcrest and Fernbank school buildings. Principal Manager Barry Roberts presented residents with how the demolition process would occur and when it would begin and end.

“Basically, our company is taking the school building down, re-grading the site and grassing the area,” he said. “It is up to the school district to decide what is done with the area once we complete our contractual obligations.”

The company will also re-route existing utilities, including water and sewer and ensure the safety of the area.

Although the school building will be demolished, the gymnasium, built in 1998, will remain intact.

“It was our understanding that this community wanted the gymnasium to remain so it is staying and will remain operative while we tear down the school,” Roberts said.

Crews will work from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays only, breaking down the structure and removing the debris from the site. Prior to demolition of the building, Roberts said a third-party will come in to remove asbestos or any other hazardous materials.

“We will be making some dust as we knock the building down, but we have to make sure there is nothing hazardous in the building before we begin that process and our goal is to have zero dust leave the demolition area,” Roberts said.

Many residents in attendance voiced concerns about rodents and other pests in the building, but Wright and Roberts said the school will be treated before the demolition process begins.

“To my knowledge, most buildings that have been abandoned for the amount of time that this school has been abandoned do not have a big pest problem,” Wright said. “But it will be treated with traps and poison that will only affect the vermin in the building and no outside animals.”

The permitting process has begun through the county and design drawings are being created.

“The design drawings will show the site with hash marks through the school because we’re taking it away and we can make those available to anyone online,” Roberts said.

The process is expected to begin in late March and be finished by late April.

“Once we begin to tear down the building, it will take about 30 days to complete,” said Roberts. “Our ultimate goal is to leave the area better than the way it is now.”

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