City and school officials have approved use of seven school sites for a combination of commercial development, senior-citizen housing and expanded public recreation.
The agreement, worked out during seven months of intense negotiations, was unanimously approved by the City Council and the Redondo Beach City Elementary School District board at separate meetings Tuesday. School trustees Valerie Dombrowski and Howard Huizing were absent and did not vote.
The agreement was unveiled to city and school officials in February, but approval was delayed for nearly two months as attorneys for both sides hammered out final wording of the document.
The agreement calls for commercial development and construction of up to 300 housing units for the elderly at the closed Andrews and McCandless schools. The site of the closed Franklin school will be converted to a park.
The city will continue to operate a community resource center at the former Patterson school under a new five-year lease, and playgrounds at three active campuses--Beryl, Madison and Jefferson--will be improved for joint school and community use.
The agreement allows the school district to retain ownership of the surplus sites. The city will use the Franklin site under a 99-year lease agreement, and the district will grant developers 55-year leases on the Andrews and McCandless properties.
The agreement has been applauded by city and school officials as a model of cooperation in resolving the often-conflicting land-use interest of cities and school districts.