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Council Update: High Schools Cost Review, Aldrich Sold for $2M

Warwick City Hall

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[CREDIT: Rob Borklowski] Warwick City Hall. Monday, the City Council hired Ellana Inc. to perform a new high schools cost review and sold the former Aldrich School property for $2 million.
Editor’s note: The Council Update is a twice-monthly update on Council meetings and developments from Warwick City Council President Steve McAllister. The column is written after each council meeting, twice a month. This review of Warwick City Council events has been lightly edited to update time references, for grammar, and to include referential links for further reading.  

WARWICK, RI — The June 26th Warwick City Council meeting was productive and we addressed a number of important issues, hiring Ellana Inc. for a new high schools cost review and selling Aldrich School for $2 million.

I am pleased to report the council voted to engage into negotiations with Ellana Inc. Construction Consultants of New York to conduct an independent review of the school department’s plan to build two new high schools.  We will now negotiate the cost and timeline to receive this report.  Once we receive the report we will make it public.  The council unanimously agreed that having an updated study done on the high schools cost is necessary before any decisions can be made whether to issue the $350 million bonds.

Warwick City Councilman Steve McAllister

The council also voted to sell the former Aldrich Junior High to Winn Development for $2 million.  Winn Development had the highest bid, and in my opinion, the most exciting plan as well.  They plan to repurpose the building and create senior housing.  They are also going to keep part of the property as open space for community use.  I would like to highlight my colleague Councilman Rix for his work on this.  He represents the area where the school is located and proposed an amendment last night that strengthens the City’s position during this process and put additional safeguards in place to ensure what Winn proposed in their bid will be the plan that moves forward.  Both Councilman Rix’s amendment and the sale passed unanimously.

The third item I would like to highlight was amending the code of ordinances for the city’s harbor management plan.  A lot of work was put into this by the administration and the sponsors Councilman Ladouceur and Councilwoman Travis.  Councilman Ladouceur came to the council meeting prepared with three amendments the council considered and passed when this item was first considered.  He had spoke to a number of quahogers and fishermen who had some concerns about some of the originally proposed changes.  These changes were taken out of the ordinance and during public comment each speaker agreed with eliminating these three items and thanked the council for making those changes.  This new ordinance passed, and we also decided to do a separate resolution for the entire harbor management plan.  That resolution will be heard at the July 17th meeting.  This will allow the public additional time to review this plan. I would like to commend Council members Ladouceur and Travis for speaking to key stakeholders before the meeting and getting their input on these important changes which affect the livelihood of many Warwick residents.

Upcoming Warwick events:

July 3rd Independence Day fireworks at Oakland Beach rain date 7/5

Food trucks and live music 7/15 9am to 3pm Rocky Point

Movies at Rocky Point 7/6 Lightyear 8:30.

Have a safe and fun summer! Happy Forth of July!

Steve

Rob Borkowski
Author: Rob Borkowski

Rob has worked as reporter and editor for several publications, including The Kent County Daily Times and Coventry Courier, before working for Gatehouse in MA then moving home with Patch Media. Now he's publisher and editor of WarwickPost.com. Contact him at [email protected] with tips, press releases, advertising inquiries, and concerns.

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