Holley gets a glimpse of apartments, offices taking shape at old high school

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 18 October 2019 at 4:52 pm

Photos by Tom Rivers

HOLLEY – Home Leasing offered tours on Thursday afternoon to community members interested in the transformation at the old Holley High School.

Home Leasing is turning the school into the “Holley Gardens,” which will have 41 apartments – one studio, 35 one-bedrooms, and five two-bedroom apartments.

The Rochester company started construction last November. It is pushing to have the offices ready for the Village of Holley government on Feb. 1 with the apartments ready to be moved in by Feb. 15.

Cole Fredendall, 9, of Holley checks out one of the apartments in the former school, which offers a view of St. Mary’s Catholic Church.

George DeRue is the construction superintendent for Home Leasing. He stands next to blackboards from the school which will be repurposed in the apartments. DeRue said residents will find the blackboards handy to write notes.

Community members get a tour of one of the apartments under construction. Most of the apartments are about 700 to 800 square feet.

The construction project is a $17 million transformation of the school, a building that has been vacant for more than two decades. The building opened in 1931 and closed in 1975 as a school. It was last used by Liftec Manufacturing until it went bankrupt in the mid-1990s. Holley village officials tried many times to revive the site, but previous deals fell apart and the building kept deteriorating, to the anguish of many in the community.

Home Leasing is turning the auditorium in the village offices and meeting room.

Connie Nenni, a village trustee, was on the tour on Thursday. She said it was her first time in the building. She said it will be a huge asset to Holley when it is done, offering more residential opportunities and boosting the neighborhood with a well cared for building.

DeRue, the construction manager, said some of the original seats will be put back in the auditorium space. Removing thick layers of pigeon poop from the area was a big challenge with the project, DeRue said.

“It was terrible,” DeRue said of the pigeon excrement. “There was so much of it.”

Most of the windows are currently offsite and are being refurbished by a company in Lancaster.

Home Leasing is pushing hard to have the parking lot paved before winter. It has lots of work ahead to get the apartments furnished and ready for tenants in about four months.

The building is across from the Post Office and the American Legion on Route 31.

This group heads down one of the hallways.

The scope of work includes the conversion of the auditorium into office space and meeting space for the Village of Holley, the abatement of hazardous materials, window refurbishing and replacement, roof repair and replacement, and interior wall reconfiguration.

Two new elevators will be installed as well as new mechanical, electrical, plumbing, HVAC and sprinkler systems, new water, sewer, electric and gas services, fire alarm and intercom system.

Site work will consist of underground utility work, driveways, parking lots, sidewalks, lighting and landscaping.

Some of the locker doors are being saved and placed along the hallway for ambiance.

These two women observe the work near the entrance of the former auditorium.

For more on the project from Home Leasing, click here.

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