Pittsburgh schools board weighs plans to sell two school buildings

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he board of Pittsburgh Public Schools tonight reviewed plans for selling two school buildings, Columbus on the North Side and Morningside.

Both are scheduled for a vote on Tuesday.

The proposal calls for selling Columbus for $915,000 for use by Propel Charter Schools, which currently leases the building for Propel Northside. The current rent is $10,000 per month. The tenant does minor maintenance, but the district is responsible for major maintenance.

Ronald Joseph, chief operations officer, said the Columbus price is higher than three appraisals. District debt remaining on Columbus is more than $660,000.

Also proposed is selling the closed Morningside School for $275,000 to the Urban Redevelopment Authority.

The resolution states the sale to the URA is supported by the Morningside Area Community Council. Mr. Joseph said the URA plans to work with the community on a use for the building.

The agenda reviewed did not include the potential sale of the closed Burgwin School in Hazelwood. The Hazelwood Initiative has offered $475,000 to purchase the school for use by Propel as a charter school. A vote on Burgwin has not been scheduled.

Education writer Eleanor Chute: echute@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1955.

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