Lutheran High School West will be expanding in the next few years, thanks to the $1.2 million purchase of the Westgate Professional Building and its 2.31 acres.
The Cleveland Lutheran High School Association (CLHSA) completed the purchase on Friday. The five-story professional building and its acreage are adjacent to Lutheran High School West, which is on Linden Road. The 60-year-old high school is landlocked, with Bohlken Park, established residential neighborhoods, and Westgate Shopping Center surrounding the school’s grounds.
“The is the only land we would have been able to buy to expand,” said the new Superintendent & CEO of the CLHSA, Chris Steinmann. He assumed the positions on July 1. “We saw the opportunity and took it.”
The building and the land were owned by Medwest LLC., a real estate/rental property company. Terry Coyne of Newmark Knight Frank helped broker the deal on behalf of the CLHSA. Marty Uhle, former superintendent & CEO of the CLHSA (through June 30) and Michael Waugh, Lutheran High School West principal, were also involved in the negotiations that led to the purchase.
“When the Westgate Professional Building went up for sale, we saw it as perhaps our only opportunity to expand our footprint in the years to come,” Steinmann said. “The addition of this property will give Lutheran West the ability to grow not only our student population, but the services and programs that we offer to our student body.”
Enrollment for the upcoming school year is 475 students, a record high, he said.
More than a dozen tenants currently lease space in the Westgate Professional Building, with nearly 59% occupancy. “Leases will expire in the next three to four years. That gives us time to plan ahead,” Steinmann said.
One issue to be addressed is that the building and property are in Fairview Park, and the high school is in Rocky River. “We are in contact with the mayors of both cities already,” he said. “That (issue) is something to be determined.”
“The building and land just acquired offer a multitude of opportunities for growth in our programming and facilities,” Lutheran West Principal Michael Waugh said in a press release. “We look forward to working with our community to plan the future of Lutheran High School West and how we can best fulfill our mission for decades to come.”
Steinmann said no decisions have been made about the specifics about will be done with the office building and the land. That, he said, will be determined first by working with administrators and teachers, and then expanding to input from the Lutheran West community.
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