Faced with what one official called a “gut-wrenching” decision, a task force has voted to tear down the old Sandy Hook Elementary School and build a new one in its place.
The committee of 28 officials in Newtown, Conn., unanimously recommended the plan Friday night after weeks of discussion. Other options included renovating the current building or building a new school in a different location.
The decision to rebuild on the property is a symbolic step for the community, which lost 20 children and six educators in a December shooting rampage. Since the massacre, the 430 surviving students have attended school in a neighboring town.
Laura Roche, a member of the Sandy Hook School Task Force and vice chairwoman of the Newtown School Board, told the Associated Press that the process of deciding what to do has been “very emotional and very hard.”
The $57 million proposed project will now go to the Newtown Board of Education for approval. The residents of Newtown must also approve the plan through a referendum.
Demolition of the school could begin as early as January 2014.