The Mail: 6/1-6/8

Clearing even more up about Roland Park Elementary/Middle

I am writing to you in response to your recent City Paper article "The Million Dollar Inch: Roland Park Elementary/Middle School's expensive fiasco" (Feature, May 11).

The article misconstrues the argument put forth by the Baltimore Chapter of the American Institute of Architects in our letter to the school board. The article suggests our argument hinged on the mistaken belief that the school is in a historic district. This is not true. We recommended that Baltimore City Public Schools (BCPS) "work with the Commission for Historical and Architectural Preservation (CHAP) to find a reasonable alternative to the historically inaccurate and fiscally irresponsible replacement with asphalt shingles." CHAP can take an advisory role with city-owned buildings that are not landmarked or in a CHAP district. And while CHAP originally approved asphalt shingles, they would almost certainly not approve replacing the newly installed tiles with lesser quality shingles.

Our primary argument was and still is that replacing the brand new clay tiles is an egregious waste. BCPS has a responsibility to taxpayers to be caretakers of all our public schools. With so many schools having nothing, there is no room for such senseless waste. Reinstalling the tiles that taxpayers have already paid for is the most fiscally responsible and sustainable solution.

The article states that the battle to save the tiles raises a question that Jim Determan doesn't ask: Why was a tile roof chosen in the first place? You answered that question in the first article: Because the bids came back low enough that the school system could afford it. Keith Scroggins reiterated this point at the BCPS board meeting on Tuesday. This has little to do with wealthy Roland Park residents getting their way. The bigger issue is what happens now: Do we spend $1 million to scrap $800,000 in new tiles for an inferior replacement?

BCPS should follow the recommendation put forward in the report by Restoration Engineering, Inc.: reinstall the tiles properly. Don't let the tiles—and most importantly taxpayer dollars—go to waste.

Anthony Consoli, AIA, President

 

Corrections: The print edition of a sports column on the Preakness Stakes (The Undercard, May 25) misspelled the name of the winning jockey. It is Kent Desormeaux, not Ken.

A profile on the band Oh Hang (Music, May 25) incorrectly said the members had formed a new four-piece that included former Thank You member Michael Bouyoucas. The group includes former Thank You member Jeffrey McGrath.

A preview of the new restaurant Gunther & Co. misspelled the name of the lead bartender. It is Shaun Stewart, not Shaun Steward.

The caption accompanying a story on federal homeless funding (Mobtown Beat, May 18) misidentified the subject of a photograph as a homeless man. He reached out to tell us he is not homeless but was holding a sign to support the homeless.

City Paper regrets the errors.

Clarification: An item in Baltimore City Power Rankings on the closure of gay bars cited Leon's as a recent example. While offshoot Leon's Leather Lounge did change formats, the original Leon's is still open.

Editors's Note: Due to an early production deadline for Memorial Day, Murder Ink does not appear in this issue. Look for it online at citypaper.com/news.

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