Mayor Harris wants Shelby County to take over vacant school building

Mayor Harris requests transfer of building

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Mayor Lee Harris has asked the Shelby County School board to transfer ownership of the vacant Vance Middle School building to the Shelby County government.

The school closed in 2014 and the building has sat vacant ever since.

Harris hopes to turn the blighted property around as a number of revitalization projects, including the nearby Union Row project, are now underway in South Memphis.

“This is an effort to do two things," Harris said in a letter to the school board. "First, if the building ends up in County government hands, I think we can work with Commissioners and Chairman Turner to come up with some ideas to turn the property around and maybe end this terrible blight in the middle of South Memphis."

Harris said school resources should go toward maintaining facilities currently in use instead of on buildings that sit vacant.

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