Birmingham Councilor ‘Aghast’ at Plans to Give Up Historic School; City Calls it ‘Blight’

The Birmingham Times

After much debate, Birmingham City Council on Tuesday decided to hand over the future of the city’s oldest school to developers to restore and develop, or demolish, if they choose.

Located at 24th Street and 6th Avenue North, the Powell School was built in 1888. Shuttered since 2001, the historic 16,944 square-foot site of Birmingham’s first “free school”, caught fire in 2011, substantially damaging the structure.

It was then donated to the Alabama Trust for Historic Preservation (ATHP) under a contract meant to seek redevelopment at the property, but that development never happened.

By Ryan Michaels