CLAYTON • More than 40 Clayton residents — including children — came to the Board of Alderman meeting Tuesday night to continue their protest against the potential sale of the Maryland School by the Clayton School District to a developer.
Residents say that a high-profile architect and development team wants to tear down the school and build luxury condominiums. The property is at Maryland and Jackson avenues.
Neighbors told the aldermen that they want to preserve green space and continue tending a community garden behind the school. Some said they’d like the city to establish a neighborhood park.
Chris Tennill, the district spokesman, confirmed Tuesday night that the district was in the process of negotiating a contract with a buyer and that once the contract was completed, the district would provide details.
“There are a fair amount of people in the community who would appreciate that the district is doing due diligence and trying to be fiscally responsible with our surplus property,” Tennill said.
Neighbors of Maryland School brought their protest to the Clayton School Board last week.
Jeff Morrisey, a resident, told the aldermen Tuesday night, “This is a single-family residential area. High density or even medium density (development) doesn’t make sense. It’s a great neighborhood, and we’d like it to stay a great neighborhood.”
Resident Steven Rosenblum said the city’s own park master plan favored using the property for green space.
Mayor Harold Sanger told the residents: “We do not take a rezoning lightly. If what is proposed requires a rezoning, it will be fully vetted. ... We have a process.” He said the process involves public hearings, review by city staff, plan commission, architectural review board and the Board of Aldermen.
Kol Rinah, a Jewish congregation based in University City, has submitted a $4.5 million bid to buy Maryland School. In a letter to the congregation Oct. 29, the leadership wrote: “Last week, the Board rejected our offer and accepted the offer of a competing purchaser, a commercial developer.”
“If the developer and the Board are unable to close the purchase, we may have another opportunity to pursue this property,” the letter continued.