The black locust wood exterior at the five-year-old MacArthur Elementary School in Binghamton has quickly become discolored, generating complaints about its blighted appearance.

Some have wondered whether the cladding on the $80 million building on the city's South Side will be replaced.

The Binghamton City School District is planning to hire someone to clean the siding.

In a written statement, district director of human resources and operations Eric Wilson said the black locust wood was expected to "develop a consistent gray patina over time."

The Vestal Avenue school was built to replace a building that was wrecked by flooding in 2011. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

Wilson wrote that there has been "unanticipated weathering" to the cladding because of the school's "close proximity to the highway."

Wilson said the "building material will require deep cleaning." The school district received quotes for the project but they were "very high." He said "more cost efficient quotes" are being sought for the job.

Wilson's statement added that after the wood has been cleaned the district "will develop a maintenance schedule for future upkeep."

There was no estimate regarding the likely cost of addressing the problem or when the cleaning is expected to take place.

A view of MacArthur Elementary School while it was under construction in August 2015. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)
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Contact WNBF News reporter Bob Joseph: bob@wnbf.com

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