Church rejects land sale to district

  • A Google Street View image from August 2019 of the Centerpoint Church athletic fields, which has been proposed as a location for a future middle school spearson

Monitor staff
Published: 10/16/2022 4:24:03 PM

The CenterPoint Church congregation has voted against selling land to the Concord School District, leaving District officials to look to other options for the location of Concord’s future middle school.

In a vote that took place over two Sundays, Oct. 9 and 16, CenterPoint Church parishioners decided not to enter into a purchase and sale agreement with the Concord School District, effectively ending the proposed plan to build a new Rundlett Middle School on a 38-acre parcel at 129-139 Clinton Street.

“It was great working with them. We knew this was the process when we laid it out in February and we are where we are with it,” Concord School District business administrator Jack Dunn said Sunday. “Both sides envisioned an opportunity years ago with some partnership ideas, but we will look at a different direction now.”

It will be up to the School Board to decide whether to continue the search for new properties for the Rundlett building or to proceed with the project using the current Rundlett site on South Street.

Concord School District officials first announced their interest in purchasing the church’s land back in March. Since then, the school district has submitted an application for state building aid for a $176 million project, but didn’t specify a location in their application.

The district was interested in the site because of its proximity Memorial Field and Concord High, it has enough space to allow for outdoor learning opportunities and can accommodate a potential partnership with Concord YMCA. In addition, the land is already tax-exempt because it was owned by the church.

A community group called Rebuild at Rundlett has been advocating in favor of the South Street site since early summer. The group was concerned about heavy traffic and disrupting the green space and wildlife on the Clinton Street site, and has been vocal at school board meetings and with lawn signs around the city.

Concord School Board members will discuss their options at a Capital Facilities Committee meeting coming up Nov. 2.

Eileen O

Eileen O'Grady is a Report for America corps member covering education for the Concord Monitor since spring 2020. O’Grady is the former managing editor of Scope magazine at Northeastern University in Boston, where she reported on social justice issues, community activism, local politics and the COVID-19 pandemic. She is a native Vermonter and worked as a reporter covering local politics for the Shelburne News and the Citizen. Her work has also appeared in The Boston Globe, U.S. News & World Report, The Bay State Banner, and VTDigger. She has a master’s degree in journalism from Northeastern University and a bachelor’s degree in politics and French from Mount Holyoke College, where she served as news editor for the Mount Holyoke News from 2017-2018.

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