LEWISTON — Some of the proceeds of the sale of St. Joseph's School on Main Street to a veterans' service group will help pay for religious education classrooms built in 2010.
Gil LaPointe, business manager for the Prince of Peace Catholic Parish, confirmed that the church and the Maine Diocese of Portland had reached an agreement with Worcester, Mass.,-based Veterans Inc. over the vacant school.
Veterans Inc. plans to reuse the former school at 393 Main St. as housing for veterans.
LaPointe would not say how much the building sold for, but he confirmed that all proceeds will go to the local parish. About $90,000 would pay for the 2010 classrooms at Holy Family Church.
"We designated $90,000 to reimburse ourselves," LaPointe said. "We used to use the school building for religious eduction but with the sale, we had no place else to do that. So we built the classrooms. Now, we're reimbursing the parish for that work."
St. Joseph's School was one of three Lewiston parochial schools closed by the Maine diocese in 2006. The school originally opened in 1881, and held 180 students in kindergarten through grade eight when it closed in 2006.
The building and grounds are valued at $480,000, according to city tax records.
Veterans Inc. plans to turn the school building into an 11-unit apartment complex, for use as transitional housing for homeless veterans. The proposed complex would have beds for 20 veterans, in a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom units.
Veterans Inc. is based in Worcester, Mass., and operates seven veterans' housing developments in Massachusetts and Vermont. They range in size from an 85-bed men's and women's intake shelter in Worcester to a 10-bed transitional complex in Bradford, Vt.
According to the company's website, it plans to expand into Maine and Connecticut this year. It would be the company's first property in Maine.
Representatives from Veterans Inc. would not comment on the project or when they expected work to begin, but representative Amanda Riik said the company is excited about the project and moving into Maine.
"This is something we are very eager to do," she said.