Majority of those at Vic High open house want to keep the school


WATCH: There were strong feelings Saturday at the open house regarding Victoria High School. There have been many questions about whether it will be replaced or retrofitted. As Luisa Alvarez tells us, many who showed up were adamant about saving it.

Many stood in front of Victoria High school taking pictures after all the building which is not seismically sound is facing the possibility of demolition.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words well, at the first open house Saturday, Victoria High showed it too was worth plenty.

The thought of losing the 104-year-old building was making people express what they love about it most writing it on a poster hung up on the wall.

For some, it brought back nostalgia.

Class of 57′ alumni Cliff Moffat read out loud what he wrote on the wall.

“I was privileged to graduate from Vic High in 1957 I hope future generations have the same opportunity in the same building lets continue this history,” said Moffat.

For Kristina Nikitas who graduated from the school in 2014, its what the school stands for that makes it so special and the words written on the wall in the gym.

“It grows you as a person,” she said. “Never hiss or boo a player or official like a lot of people forget that.”

Saturday was the first of two open houses before the school’s fate is decided, and hundreds showed up.

School board chairwoman Edith Loring-Kuhanga said hearing people’s stories really showed her the emotional attachment many have to the building.

“It’s going to be a tough decision and we are hoping that the community can give us some clear direction,” she said.

Opinions throughout were somewhat mixed.

But there’s no denying that the overwhelming majority in the room, wanted to preserve the school and its heritage.

“Keeping it would mean the most to every alumni, Victorian, and people that are involved in the community with the school would just be so happy and privileged to have the building stay the same,” said Nikitas.

Keeping its exterior and renovating the interior is one of the options being proposed, but it’s the costlier one and could run a bill of up to $110 million.

“There has to be a happy ground between economics and retaining what has always been here,” said Moffat.

A final decision is expected in June. The online survey can be accessed here. 

Luisa AlvarezLuisa Alvarez

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