ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – An 85-year-old elementary school in Nob Hill is starting to show signs of its old age. That’s why community members are doing what they can to help preserve the historical building.
Nob Hill community members say Monte Vista Elementary is a gem in the neighborhood and they’re not only trying to maintain the building, but teach students about energy efficiency through the process.
“It shows its age in different ways. The wood floors creak if you move in the right places,” said Jeff Tuttle. “Radiators creak and groan with expansion and contraction of the hot and cold, and the kids call it The Ghost of Monte Vista,” he continued.
From what Tuttle can see, there are no ghosts at Monte Vista Elementary, just an old school in need of some tender loving care.
“It’s an old school and it costs to keep running.”
He’s been teaching at Monte Vista for 25 years and says Albuquerque Public Schools spends tens of thousands of dollars a year maintaining the old building. Because of this, the Nob Hill community has joined forces with parents and teachers to try and take some of the pressure off APS.
“Our board of directors is interested in putting that money where it enhances the quality of life for Nob Hill,” said Gary Eyster, Vice President of the Nob Hill Neighborhood Association.
Part of that process is to try and get Monte Vista a LEED certification—Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design. In other words, make the building more sustainable and energy efficient to cut down on costs, all while being an educational experience for students.
“It’s a good example for students in this day and age to be mindful of what we’re consuming,” said Tuttle.
Right now community members are at the beginning stages of transforming the school to be more sustainable, and they understand it’s going to be a long process, but they say it will all be worth it.
“The school is an icon for our community. It’s been there for 85 years and it’s a central point of our identity,” said Eyster.
Tuttle says APS is aware and supportive of their efforts to get Monte Vista LEED certified, but there are no promises of any money to help the process. However, to help with the cost along the way, Monte Vista Elementary has teamed up with Nob Hill Main Street and various businesses in the neighborhood.