Proposal Approved by School Board to Relocate SAU Offices

On the Jan 9 meeting of the Londonderry School Board, a motion was passed 4-1 to relocate the SAU district office from 268C Mammoth Road to 6A Kitty Hawk Drive in Londonderry.

According to the school district, there have been multiple issues with the current SAU building, most notably being the air quality. The intermediate solution for this issue is to move the staff of the SAU offices to a new location near the airport.

It is the first floor of the building that will be leased and the total square footage is 10,175 and the living space for the office is 9100 square feet. The base lease is $12.09 per square foot and includes snow removal, grounds, water and sewer, and general building repairs.

The lease date will be in effect on July 1 of this year, but if the SAU staff is ready to move before then and funds are available an earlier move-in date can be arranged. The lease is also set for ten years, but may be reduced to five years and also includes an opt-clause. All furniture that is currently in the Mammoth Road offices, will be moved to 6A Kitty Hawk Drive with the exception of a possible table or two, but $100,000 will not be spent on furnishing the new building.

According to Peter Curro, the purposes of leasing the new building is to address the health issues and allow the school district and the community the next two to four years to focus on the elementary space needs, which will take lots of time and commitment to solve.

However, board member Steve Young felt this was not in the best interest of the schools or the community to lease the new building. “I will have a very difficult time walking through the grocery store and looking people in the eye. I will have to look at my feet when they ask me why we are moving the school district to a deluxe office in the sky,” Young said.

The town of Londonderry has also expressed interest into possibly renovating the space at 268C Mammoth Road and creating a community center out of it spending roughly $300,000 to do so, though nothing has been set in stone as of yet.

Criteria for moving the SAU office was also discussed and the reasons directly behind the decision to move.

Chairman Dan Lekas expressed his concerns for the safety of the staff that work in the SAU office. “I’m concerned about the people that are in there and sometimes being concerned about the people is a little bit more than money to me,” Lekas said. Urgency is also a problem with the SAU building. If the air quality worsens, it poses an immediate health risk that will need to be dealt with and money would have to found in the existing budget to move the staff to a new location, no exceptions.

At the end of the meeting, the school board motioned to accept the offer to relocate the SAU offices.

The motion passed 4-1 and the plan advanced to move the school district staff out of 268C Mammoth Road to 6A Kitty Hawk Drive.