Assemblyman encourages State do to everything possible to save historic façade

(TRENTON) – Deputy Majority Leader Reed Gusciora (D-Hunterdon/Mercer), in response to recent press reports that the “Historic TCHS clock tower may have to be sacrificed,” called upon the Schools Development Authority (SDA)’s director Charlie McKenna to do everything possible to maintain the building’s historic façade.

“While building a 21st century learning environment for Trenton’s students has been and should continue to be our absolute priority, preservation of the historic clock tower and auditorium is important to the community and the city’s history,” said Gusciora. “All steps necessary should be taken to ensure that it is maintained.”

While more structural tests are necessary to determine if the clock tower will have to be destroyed, Gusciora encouraged McKenna to investigate all the options for the façade’s preservation. “I understand that there were several options for the clock tower if it were determined to be unsound, ranging from total destruction to progressive deconstruction and ultimately reconstruction in a structurally sound manner. While the fiscal impact of these alternatives is substantial, it is something we may want to investigate if there are no other options.”

Gusciora maintains that Trenton city residents as well as the thousands of TCHS alumni over its 80 year history have a deep affinity for the once architecturally significant building. He ultimately hopes that the State will keep its commitment to building a new 21st century learning environment but incorporate the clock tower façade, the school auditorium, and the pool house, which was the site of qualifying trials for the 1936 Olympics in Berlin.

“I recognize the reason we are undergoing this project in the first place is to improve the conditions of the High School, thereby achieving a world class educational environment for the students of Trenton. We need to bring their educational environment up to par so that they are adequately prepared for the modern workforce; this is my absolute top priority. If this goal can be accomplished with the incorporation of the iconic image of the school clock tower, then all the better.”