New plans for an old school

February 9, 2013 by  

Although it has been empty for eight years, there are now multiple plans to buy the old Northrop school on the south side of Minneapolis.

The historical building was originally built in 1923 when the city was in need of more educational districts in its outlying areas. Now, two teams, after visiting their local print company to make up blue prints and other speculative documents, have come up with plans to make use of the abandoned piece of real estate.

First, Untied Properties, a familiar face to many, returned to the area’s council with a revision of its original plan to use the building to start a charter school and the surrounding land to build 65 new units of cooperative housing for seniors. This was a slight change to their previous proposal of over 100 housing units and a plan to utterly raze the existing school building.

The second plan is from Hiawatha Academies, which already operates one elementary school in the city’s most southeastern corner as well, as a middle school elsewhere. Both are considered to be highly regarded charter schools which serve a low income, mostly Latino population. According to the group’s plans, the Northrop school building would be used to create a second elementary school, which would open next year and ultimately serve about 400 students.

The school board and city officials will meet later this winter to decide which proposal should get the site and the next course of action.