NILES MIDDLE SCHOOL District takes an alternative route

The new entrance will improve safety, the school board president said.
NILES -- The school district is dismissing its eminent-domain attempts to get a Brown Street property for an entrance to the new middle school.
The school district wanted the property owned by Donald and Sofia Froom, but they were unable to reach an agreement on a price, prompting the eminent-domain action. The district is building a new middle school in Brynhyfryd Park, off state Route 46 on the city's south side.
Superintendent Patrick Guliano said the school district has decided on another entrance off Second Street and no longer needs the Frooms' property.
"The Frooms really wanted to stay on the property," Guliano said. "Mr. Froom has been at the property for most of his life."
The new entrance runs off Second Street, closer to the Thomas House.
"We're not in the business of displacing elderly Americans," Guliano said.
He said the new path, approved by David DeChristofaro, city engineer, follows an S shape.
"That will slow down the traffic" heading into the school, said John Tricomi, school board president, adding that will improve safety.
Staying there: Froom, 77, has lived at the house since 1948.
"If they had come up with the right price I would have moved out. Nobody particularly wants to live next to a school," he said.
Froom wouldn't divulge the amount he wanted for the property or the amount offered by the school district.
"For what they were offering us, there's no way we could buy a new place with the same living space," said Mrs. Froom, 69. "For what they were going to give us, there's no way we were going to start all over again."
The school, which will replace the 88-year-old Edison Junior High School, is expected to open in fall 2002.
"We're not heartless. We're not the big bad wolf," the superintendent said. "All we want is to build a school and have it be safe for everyone."

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