Saline Schools Buy Liebherr Property for Transportation and Operations Division


The Saline Board of Education unanimously approved the purchase of two parcels of land in a City of Saline industrial park.

The terms of the purchase agreement stipulate the district will pay $484,800 to Liebherr Gear and Automation Techologies, Inc., for land located on Tefft Court.

The motion was made by Trustee Brad Gerbe and seconded by Trustee Lauren Gold.

The district plans to use the 7.1 acres for its operations department, which includes its transportation. Today, the transportation department is located behind the middle school on central campus in the city. The district needs more space behind the middle school for an upgraded senior center, a senior wellness, cosmetology and physical therapy center, and a new middle school STEAM center - projects proposed for the recently approved bond issue.

"I think it's an excellent value for the district," SAS Director of Operations Rex Clary said. "I want to thank Liebherr for sitting down and listening to our offer and why we think it would be good for the community and good for the schools."

Clary specifically noted the move helps create room for a new middle school STEAM center and noted Liebherr already supports the Saline robotics program. He said the STEAM center will open the door for partnership between Liebherr and the schools.

He said it was refreshing to work with Liebherr Gear and Automation president Gary Chatell.

Superintendent Steve Laatsch commended Clary and the district's capital projects team for sticking with it through a complex process.

"We're really happy about this arrangement because it does feel like a partnership with Liebherr. They're able to move a piece of property they wanted to get rid of and that helps us out," Laatsch said.

Answering a question from Trustee Susan Estep, Clary explained the district was looking at a different property across from the bowling alley on a lease basis. Still, the district would have needed to remove an office. The district then considered a property next door at 905 Woodland Drive, but the district and owner disagreed on the value of the property.

The approved purchase agreement calls for an inspection. If all goes well, the closing date is May 15.

Tefft Court is also home to the city's Department of Public Works. 

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