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New Waterfront Design Leaves Out Old Sacramento Schoolhouse

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OLD SACRAMENTO -- The renovation of the Old Sacramento Waterfront has gotten civic leaders excited because tentative plans call for removing nonhistorical buildings so visitors can have access and views of the river.

A casualty of the makeover is the Old Sacramento Schoolhouse Museum, which has hosted tens of thousands of visitors since it was constructed in 1976.

It was the cornerstone of the effort to transform a rundown skid row area into a tourist attraction.

But the one-room schoolhouse staffed by volunteers is a replica and is not in the renovation plans.

The docents and volunteers who operate the free museum fear it may be torn down.

Its current site on the edge of Old Sacramento was chosen so it would not conflict with commercial businesses or block river views. Jean Alley, a docent since the schoolhouse was built, said the building was constructed on piers so that it could be relocated if there was a problem with its location in the future.

“We can move this anywhere. So there’s no excuse for not having it,” Alley said.

Finalizing the new design for Old Sacramento and the start of construction could be several years away and supporters of the museum said they hope it will remain in the historic area.

“We’re going to lobby for that and push for that and keep this schoolhouse here in Old Sacramento,” said Lesley Dubin, who sits on the museum board.

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