Niagara Gazette — Nothing could save the building in 1959 as it was now considered a fire hazard and the Board of Education voted to close the school. The doors remained closed following the Christmas recess and the students were transferred to other city schools when school resumed in January. Niagara Falls attorney John DelMonte attended Sugar Street School in its final year. He was in kindergarten and lived on 37th Street near Church Street. He remembers walking to school with his mother and even occasionally on his own. No fear in those sensible days. The Cold War was during this time and he also remembers the “duck and cover” drills. The family moved to Jerauld Avenue the following year and he continued his elementary education at Hyde Park School.
The property was sold for $28,000 to Armand Cerrone in 1960. The school was demolished and The Consumer Foods Outlet (Tripi Foods) operated there for several years. Currently the property is owned by Micbarcer Realty Company and occupied by World Discounts.
Sometimes not everything works the way we would like. As the Board of Education continued to divest itself of unsafe and unneeded school properties, some were demolished and new private construction utilized the vacant lot and some building were renovated into something new and necessary as we shall see in future articles.
Sometimes it did not work too well as is the case with the Whitney Avenue School (1898-1976). Located on the corner of 18th Street and Whitney Avenue at 1310 18th St. in the city’s North End, this two-story brick school was opened in 1898 as population increased considerably in this area. The architect was George W. Wright and he kept the design simple compared to the other schools built during this period. No bell towers and other ornamentation here but there was sufficient room for 12 classrooms. Miss Norma Osgood was the first principal.