October 24, 2021

Selectmen Vote to Demolish Anawan School

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The Rehoboth Board of Selectmen voted Monday to demolish the Anawan School. Selectman Michael Deignan explained the board had given the Community Preservation Committee and the Historical Commission a period of six weeks to present a plan on how they were going to save the building. Deignan said since no plan had been presented, the board had to follow the instructions of William McDonough, the town’s Building Commissioner, who said the building at 53 Bay State Road was “unsafe” and ordered it to be demolished within 90 days.

CPC Chair Carol Williams had hired a structural engineer to inspect the facility. “He said (the building) has a 25 to 50 year usefulness if it were taken care of,” Williams told the Reporter last month. “In the meantime, it’s just deteriorating further. We can’t do anything, we can’t put a roof on, we can’t do anything because (selectmen) don’t want it done.” Williams was hospitalized recently and did not appear before the board as scheduled on September 6.

McDonough, Fire Chief Frank Barresi, and Health Agent Karl Drown conducted an inspection of the building on June 3. McDonough reported 90 percent of the ceilings had collapsed and all of the hardwood floors were “completely buckled and rotted.” The building was also impacted by extensive water damage. McDonough spotted “multiple holes on the roof” and multiple broken windows.

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