Daily Archives: April 17, 2010

Moran School gets a bit of national spotlight

Preservation, the magazine of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, featured an article this week about the efforts to save the Moran School theater building.

“It’s a handsome building, and it’s large—it has the capacity to house 30 to 40 offices, and so would make a great building for a non-profit or a community organization to have headquarters there,” says Will Shopes, chair of Bainbridge’s Historic Preservation Commission…

The city recently put a temporary hold on plans to demolish the building.

Despite its historic value, Shopes doesn’t hold much hope for the building’s preservation.

….that dream might not be realistic. The building is located in a residential neighborhood, making parking scarce, and is in poor condition, as it has sat empty since the 1950s. “We’ve had no real dialogue with Soundcare officials, but all I’ve heard from them is that the building is a nuisance,” Shopes says. “They say it will take $1 million to 1.5 million to stabilize the building, between $3 million and $5 million to restore it, and $100,000 to tear it down.”

With those figures, the Moran School’s future looks dim. But Shopes hopes that the community’s efforts could save the grand structure. “On the island we have had a little bit of success in getting the community behind preserving some of our notable historic features, so it might happen someone could still come forward and offer to lease it, or fix it up,” he says.

Read Preservation’s full article HERE.