members on Wednesday defeated a proposal to sell Parmenter School for a minimum of $1.7 million.
Several members spoke out against the sale because of Parmenter’s significance and place in Arlington history. Others argued the school hasn’t belonged to the town for decades and the space could yield much-needed revenue.
Parmenter School, 17 Irving St., houses two educational programs, and the International School of Boston. The property to be sold, which hasn't been used by the town since the 1980s, would only include the school, leaving untouched.
In their proposal, the Board of Selectmen restricted sale of the building to educational programs, and the Board’s position was that Arlington could hold off on selling the building to one of the programs already at the school. The Selectmen proposed a minimum price of $1.7 million.
“I know this is a hard choice, to give up town property is not a decision we take lightly,” Selectman Annie LaCourt said. “I hope that you will support the Board’s vote and you will give us the flexibility to maximize what we can get out of this building.”
Andrew Fischer, Precinct 6, echoed statements made by many: Parmenter is a part of Arlington.
“I think it’s unwise; both of these locations are part of the heritage of the town,” Fischer said, referring to the Crosby School, another building the Selectmen have proposed to sell. “This generation doesn’t have the right to sell that heritage.”
The debate over Parmenter School ended minutes before 11 p.m., when Town Meeting took up the issue of selling Crosby School. The meeting adjourned and will take up conversations about Crosby at on Monday, May 23, at 8 p.m.