Nearly 30 years later ground to be broken for school office building

Nearly 30 years later ground to be broken for school office building

SALISBURY, NC (WBTV) - It may be the most anticipated new building project of the last thirty years in Rowan County.  It's been about that long since school and civic leaders first began discussing building a new central office building for the Rowan-Salisbury School System.

On Saturday a formal ceremony will be held to break ground, even if work has actually been going on at the site for the last few weeks.

By a 5-2 vote last November, Board of Education members approved signing a contract to build the facility at 500 N. Main Street, at a cost of right around $8 million.

Then Chairman Richard Miller called it "a gift of closure."

The Rowan County commission has approved $6.5 million, the Robertson Family Foundation is providing $875,000, the City of Salisbury is in for $500,000, and there is another donation of $150,000 of "in kind services."

Over the years the debate over the office had to do with its cost, location, size, and whether or not such a facility was even needed. Promising starts by those in favor of the project were often stopped.

The debate nearly always began over what were described as "deplorable" conditions and desperate space needs at the central office location on N. Long Street in East Spencer. Supporters wanted to bring together the various administrative offices into one central location.

Those who opposed the project usually did so over cost concerns and thought the money would be better spent in classrooms.

The groundbreaking will take place for the Wallace Educational Forum on Saturday at 3:00 pm.  The site is located in the 500 block of North Main Street.