Council keeps deadline on old Denison H.S.

By: Ryan Loyd Email
By: Ryan Loyd Email

DENISON, Tex. -- Monday marked decision day for the Denison city council, and they came and went with a plan the people liked.

During a special meeting Monday afternoon, residents voiced their concerns about saving the old Denison High School. The council then met in executive session to determine whether or not to tear down the old high school now or give the people until August 10th to decide what to do next.

Denison council members heard from people who are passionate not only to save the old Denison High School, but to save the city of Denison as well.

Marcia Chrise isn't even from Denison, but her determination to help stop demolition of the old high school is strong.

Many others turned out to show once again that their support is just as strong.

But would all their effort and ‘Rally Round Our School’ signs convince the city council in a special session to keep the August 10th deadline?

Michelle Castle says, "We can do this without costing the city taxpayers money."

In an emotional meeting after more than an hour of debate, the council kept its promise.

“There won't be anything done. The council is looking at options that may give them more time," Denison mayor Robert Brady announced

But petitioners only have until the original date of August 10th to come up with that plan.

Until then, petitioners like Mike Tingle are keeping the passion alive.

"It’s our history; it's a gem in the rough. It is. We lose this, what else are they gonna take?"

Are you for or against saving the old Denison High School?


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  • by historybuff Location: denison on Sep 5, 2007 at 09:29 AM
    Welcome to "Smithmunsville".... Wake up Denison!!! I hope that the reason for the latest decision the Mayor & City Council has made to continue with the demolition of the old DHS has not gone un noticed. This was an "In your face" arrogant demonstration of WHO exactly it is that controls what happens in your town. If you think your vote really counts here, you have another think coming. The Smith Foundation has stepped up to the plate and shown for all who see, who exactly controls your Mayor, City Council and City Manager. It is foundations such as theirs that really decide what will and what will not happen in this city. I for one am sick and tired of the "good ole boys" (and not JUST the Smith Foundation) taking my vote away from me. This town has been controlled by purse strings belonging to a few people/organizations for too long. When will we wake up and make a change. I for one, say that should be NOW!
  • by Ralph Location: Denison on Aug 18, 2007 at 02:52 PM
    Those who revert to silly name calling on either side of this issue do so at the risk of diminishing their argument. I question neither the sincerity nor intelligence of those who argue for or against preserving this structure. As one who holds no emotional attachment to old DHS, I can see how a revitalized building fits into a pro-business plan that emphasizes capitalizing on the historical character of the city. Conversely, the city is ill-served by having an eyesore on Main St. The question remains as to whether or not the city is better served by a having vacant lot at that location. Rumors aside, it is not currently a prime location for business development. Think about it, if you ran a big business or retail chain, would you consider relocating there? The preservationsists raised $675K in a matter of ten days. This new group has an achievable plan, phase #1 of which involves securing and restoring the shell so it is no longer an eyesore, AND at no expense to the taxpayers.
  • by George Location: Denison on Aug 2, 2007 at 11:04 PM
    By the way Hillary, I appreciate the arrogant comments of "As a person who ‘knows’ architecture and design I can tell you Denison is lacking in character and style..." and "who needs to raise another generation of people without diversity, history and culture..." Nice to know that all of us who want to see that decrepit eyesore be torn down are ill-cultured baboons. Drive around town and look at some of the houses and estates both old and new. There are still some interesting structures that are not in a state of decay and disrepair. And yes, we are concerned about our children's future, that's why we want to see this useless, decaying eyesore torn down. We want to build a future for our kids, not shackle another generation to the schoolyard memories of a bunch of has-beens and stick them with a useless old building and denied opportunities in the name of "preserving heritage". If you want to remember the past, open your yearbook. If you want progress, tear down old DHS. Just 7 days..
  • by George Location: Denison on Aug 2, 2007 at 10:47 PM
    Many options have been looked at over the years for saving old DHS (most recently Denison Heritage Inc. a few years ago) and no viable option has ever been found to preserve the school. It needs to be torn down. This town has a rich cultural history, but that doesn't justify saving a condemned building that has outlived its usefulness and wastes resources. If we focus so much on the past, we will rob ourselves of our future, and I just don't think it's worth that price. We all know that when, if any, private donations run out over the years, it will end up being the taxpayers picking up the cost for what will most likely be an empty building. In fact, there are other old, empty bulidings taking up space in Denison that should be torn down also and renovated for future commercial development (for example, the old elementary school on Armstrong near Morton, and the Traveler's Hotel). It would shake this town's mentality out of backwards thinking and into the future and progressiveness.
  • by George Location: Denison on Aug 2, 2007 at 10:32 PM
    Hillary, according to you, if we restore the old building, people will come flocking back to our city to tour our heritage. We all know that is a bunch of crap. You said "the more we work to put beauty and class into this place the more young people who have left for college will be inclined to come back home to Denison". I actually feel more dumb after reading that. They don't come back home because there are no high paying jobs and opportunities here because some people want to hold this town back and live in the past and hinder its progress. Tearing down that eyesore would improve quality of life here, not hinder it. And why are you comparing Denison to NYC? I've been there, so what? Apples and oranges. We are talking about tearing down one old condemned building that is a hazard and an eyesore. Tearing down the old to make way for the new. It's all moot point anyway, because you're never going to have a working plan in seven days and it's going to be torn down. Enjoy the limelight
  • by Susie Location: tx on Aug 2, 2007 at 07:35 PM
    When driving north on the bridge by Albertsons,I can see the clock tower from there!!It is beautiful!!If they tear it down,I will never forget its beauty!!
  • by anonymous on Aug 2, 2007 at 09:41 AM
    Hilary, I appreciate your sentiment I really do, but you must not understand that Denison is a poor poor town. It sickens me that in a town of 25,000 people the only place to buy a music cd, a book, sports equipment or even clothing is a walmart store. This town needs a book store, movie theatre, clothing stores, restaurants, not another landmark. If Denison was a thriving place I might agree with you but the population keeps decreasing therefore tax dollars keep decreasing. And with a decreasing population who do you think will occupy this building once restored? The history of Denison is that it was a railroad town and they have the depot to honor that. We do not need to spend 8 million on a school house. Think of how the same 8 million spent in other ways could benefit Denison in a more effective way.
  • by Shawna Location: Denison on Aug 2, 2007 at 09:35 AM
    My grandma told me that that high school was the first high school in Texas and I think thats important. We should save that school because it is history.
  • by Steve J Location: Denison on Aug 2, 2007 at 09:22 AM
    Hilary if the money was there I don't believe you would get any objections, but so far after 20 years no one has come up with any. Not one single person who wants to save this building has said "Here is the money" or "We have grants in place". Give the people a true plan that will work not "just use your imagination".
  • by IV Location: denison on Aug 1, 2007 at 09:58 PM
    Why is this small town's tax payers feeding the need of Joe Pollaro. He has no desire for preservation of anything. He drives jaguars and cadillacs. I've never seen him digging a ditch or working in a soup kitchen. If Joe Pollaro had any other agenda besides putting himself or one of his kids on TV, then he would have never lead this campaign without placing himself and his entire family in the spotlight. What about the Crisis Center that is around the corner? What about the Boys/Girls club that watches our children while us taxpayers are out busting our butts to apparently save an old building? What about the teachers that have our children about 8 hours a day and can barely afford things for teaching their class. I'd rather have my money go to them, after all, children are our future. People wake up, go grab a brick when it comes tumbling down. Place it in your home and worship it everyday if that's what floats your boat, but find a real cause. Go visit a Nursing Home.
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