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South Bay Digest

Torrance : City Buys Former School

February 06, 1986

The sale of the former Greenwood School to the city by the Torrance Unified School District has finally been completed.

The City Council on Tuesday approved a sale agreement that had been accepted by the school board the night before, ending nearly 15 months of negotiations. Final papers will be signed next week.

"I am delighted," said school board President David Sargent. "Obviously the big winners are the residents. They wind up with the same amount of open space regardless if it is a school or recreational open space."

For nearly a year, the two sides squabbled over the value of the 3.4-acre site and the city filed a lawsuit in August to prevent the district from selling the site to anyone else.

In November, they agreed on a price of $1.9 million. However, the next month was spent arguing over how the money should be paid. It was finally agreed that the city would make a $700,000 down payment and pay the balance over the next two years at 9% interest, or payments of $708,000 in 1987 and $654,000 in 1988.

A dispute then arose over what the city could do with the property and under what conditions the district could buy it back. That was finally resolved this week.

Under the sale agreement, the city can use the site only for parks and recreation programs. The city will also be allowed to build a water well in a corner of the property.

The district is allowed to buy back the property only for school purposes and would pay the same sale price adjusted for inflation. The district would be allowed to sell the site in the open market only if the city no longer wanted it for a park.

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