July 27, 1999

Ms. Patricial Zedalis
Chief Executive for School Facilities
Division of School Facilities
Board of Education
28-11 Queens Plaza North
Long Island City, New York 11101

Dear Ms. Zedalis:

We are pleased to have sent you the report on P.S. 109 completed by Robert Silman Associates. Thank you for being willing to consider these findings in approaching the futyre of P.S. 109.

As you see, the report demonstrates that P.S. 109, while needing repairs, is structurally sound and could serve many future generations of schoolchildren. In your May 3, 1999 letter to me you said one reason the Board wished to demolish the school was "severe structural deterioration." Silman Associates does not agree. There is no danger that any of the portions will fail. The report does not agrees with an earlier School Construction Authority estimate that the cost for restoring the exterior is $10 million. In your May 3, 1999 letter, you said you believed that number to be "understated" and that the cost would be much higher. It is not.

The Silman report's estimates are based on work their firm is doing on other Snyder schools. You have spent comparable sums on schools in comparable condition.

There is no need to demolish this structure. It has architectural and historical quality and is an important neighborhood anchor. Repairing it would be much less expensive than building a new facility of equal size and quality. And restoring it would be a project that the Board and SCA could point to with pride. If you still decide against using it yourself, we would hope you would see if could be adapted for use by others.

     Stuart N. Siegel, Chairman
     Peg Breen, President

141 Fifth Avenue
New York, New York 10010
Tel: 212 995-5260
Fax: 212 995-5268

Board of Directors
Michael L. Ainslie
John Belle, FAIA, RIBA
William L. Bernhart
Kathryn McGraw Berry
Simon Breines, FAIA
Paul. S. Byarde, FAIA
Joan O. Camiins
Anne Coffin
Henry P. Davison II
Michael K. De Chiara
Douglas Durst
Stuart P. Feld
John M. Forelle
Robert C. Graham, Jr.
Charles P. Halstead
Hully Hurchner

John A. Kerz, Jr.
Stephen Kirschenbaum
Stephen S. Lash
Sarah Tomerlin Lee
Mimi Levier
Burr Manning
Joan B. Maynard
John Morning
The Honorable
  Daniel Patrick Moynihan
Donald Oresman
Frederic S. Papert
Frances Scaife
Marc P. Schappell
Joanne M. Stern
Donald G. Tober
John E. Zuccotti

Advisory Council
Laurie Beckelman
Pamela Rubin Carter
Peter Duchin
Norton Garfinkle
Ada Louise Huxtable
Susan Henshaw Jones
Ronald S. Lauder
Marjorie Flanaghan MacLachlan
Allison Simmons Prouty
Elizabeth F. Stribling
Farran Tozer
The Reverend Canon
  Frederick B. Wiliams

Ms. Patricial Zedalis
Page 2

We were also concerned to read in today's Times that you wish to demolish P.S. 31 in the Bronx, another important and architecturally significant building. From talking with Silman Associates, we understand your problems there. Please be assured that Silman Associates has a sound and less expensive method of repairing steel. You would not run to the same problems at P.S. 109 that you are encountering at P.S. 31. We hope we can be of help here as well.

The Snyder, and other landmark schools, are a proud legacy of the City's concern for educating cdhildren. With proper maintenance, they can serve that goal today. We hope that the Conservancy can be an added resource to help you with your landmark structures. And I look forward to discussing the future of P.S. 109 and others with you.




Deputy Chancellor Lewis H. Spence
Linda Gillies
Julian Adams
Senator Olga Mendez
Council Philip Reed
Kent Barwick
Raymond Plumey