Board backs school site

Community Board 1 passed a resolution last week calling for the creation of a new elementary/intermediate school on a parking lot owned by N.Y.U. Downtown Hospital.

The site, bordered by Spruce, Beekman, Nassau and Gold Sts., is a prime location for a school, the resolution said. Since it is slated for development soon, the property represents an opportunity to get classrooms built as quickly as possible, it continued.

The need for a new school in Lower Manhattan will only grow over the next several years as more than 8,000 residential units are created below Canal St., community members have said. Local classrooms, particularly at P.S. 234 in Tribeca, are already over capacity.

The proposed elementary and intermediate school would be structured like P.S./I.S. 89 in Battery Park City, which share a building but have different principals. It would have 800 seats and 100,000 square feet. Its east side location would provide a necessary geographical balance, the resolution said, since all public grade schools in the area are on the west side.

Both the Department of Education and N.Y.U. Downtown Hospital would have to approve the plan for a new school to be built. Neither party would comment to Downtown Express on the community’s school proposal.