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City leaders discuss plans for old Quincy schools

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Instead of having them sit vacant, plans are now in the works for three old elementary schools in Quincy. 

Those plans were discussed at Monday's Quincy City Council meeting. 

One of those schools is Dewey Elementary, which closed at the end of the 2017-2018 school year.  About a year ago, developers wanted to turn the school into an office, gym, catering service, and daycare. City Planner Chuck Bevelheimer says those plans didn't pan out, so now there are new plans for not only Dewey, but also for Madison and Adams Elementary. 

Quincy Resident Dan Harper says he's ready to see something happen at the old Dewey Elementary School.

"I'm glad they have something going on besides a building sitting there going bad," said Harper. 

Developers plan to convert the building into 13 apartments and four event spaces. It's a stark contrast to what other developers originally had in mind. 

"This time around the petitioner is asking to primarily use it for residential purposes," said Bevelheimer. 

Over at the former Madison School located on Maine, there are plans to convert the building into apartments. 

"To reuse a school like that, you're options are very limited," said Bevelheimer. 

The school sold at auction for $200,000 back in October and Bevelheimer says apartments would be a good fit for the architecturally significant building. 

"For a residential neighborhood, since it's an attached building in terms of units and in terms of rooms, the only real opportunity to use that building would be for commercial or residential," said Bevelheimer. 

At the former Adams Elementary School, which also sold for $200,000, it could soon be home to offices and apartments. 

"It's not a traditional two or three-story brick building, which you have with Madison School," said Bevelheimer. "It's more laid out. It's more spread out. It would probably be better used for commercial on the front and residential on the backside."

The plans will now go to the plan commission for a public hearing. The plan commission will then send a recommendation to city council for final approval. 

If approved, petitioners have a year to get the projects up and running.  If petitioners run into setbacks, Bevelheimer says they can get an extension but it would need to be approved by city council. 

Kaylee Pfeiferling

Multimedia Journalist

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