MADISON — The former Weston Avenue Elementary School fell Wednesday morning to the long arm of the excavator, which reduced the old, two-story building to a pile of bricks, plaster and debris.
It was the second old Madison school to be demolished in the past two years. The former Madison Junior High School, later Main Street Elementary, was torn down in 2012. That land was turned into a popular playground.
So far, there are no plans for the site at 55 Weston Ave.
The Madison Board of Selectmen voted unanimously in July to consolidate property and buildings it maintains and decided to demolish the vacant Weston Avenue school and a 100-year-old former general store in East Madison.
Selectmen awarded a bid for the demolition of the two buildings at a total cost of $98,724 to David P. Trask & Son Inc. of Hudson.
Madison Town Manager Dana Berry said the Weston Avenue building was a school for many years before School Administrative District 59 moved its offices there. The school district later moved administrative offices to the junior high and high school, leaving the Weston Avenue building vacant.
“They had no further use for that building and turned it over to the town, I believe, July 1, 2013,” Berry said. “The Board of Selectmen had several discussions and they walked through that school and Old Point Avenue and decided that, probably with the tenants that are currently in Old Point Avenue, we’d be better off keeping that school, at least temporarily, and demolishing the Weston Avenue school.”
The former Old Point Avenue school now is home to the historical society, CATV-11 and the Board of Selectmen meeting room.
Berry said selectmen believed it was better to tear down the Weston Avenue building than to let it sit vacant and deteriorate as the old junior high school did.
“Just the cost of renovating those old buildings to make them compliant and energy efficient was just not economically feasible,” Berry said.
No one from the historical society was available for comment on the history of the place Wednesday.
Berry said the property on Weston Avenue will be leveled, graded and seeded with grass until the town decides what to do with it.
Doug Harlow — 612-2367