Caribou plans to sell Hilltop School
CARIBOU, Maine — Caribou City Council introduced an ordinance on Dec. 27 to sell Hilltop Elementary School to Caribou Senior Living, LLC, for future conversion to a retirement home.
RSU 39, a school unit that oversees Caribou, Limestone, and Stockholm schools, recently conveyed the property to the city, and officially closed the school in the spring of 2017. The school closure is part of a $50 million PreK-8 new school project in Caribou, which involves shutting down Hilltop Elementary School, Teague Park Elementary School, Caribou Middle School and the Caribou Learning Center, and moving students and faculty to one facility, which will be built in 2020, on Bennett Drive.
Council can approve the ordinance immediately after a Jan. 8 public hearing at 6:30 p.m. in the council chambers, at which point the sale will be effective.
Caribou City Manager Dennis Marker said that because the transaction is part of a “negotiation arrangement” between Caribou, RSU 39, and Caribou Senior Living, there is “more than just a dollar amount” involved.
The Marshall Avenue school and surrounding 7.14 acres of land will be exchanged for 0.66 acres of land adjacent to the old Sincock administration building on Main Street. Additionally, Caribou Senior Living will tear down the Main Street building.
Marker said the city will also keep the recreation field and playground equipment in front of Hilltop Elementary.
Marker added in a Dec. 8 email that the Hilltop “gets transferred with asbestos abatement requirements, which have been estimated by the RSU at over $240,000.”