Tag Archives: Powell School

Next steps to save Powell School underway

Powell School debris cleanupFolks driving into downtown Birmingham, AL the morning of February 1 may have noticed a dumpster sitting out in front of the historic Powell School Building¬†along 6th Avenue North. It’s OK if the rain might have kept you from noticing…

It appears that workers from One Stop Environmental have begun to remove debris from the city’s oldest school a little more than a year after a devastating fire did significant damage to it. The property was donated to the Alabama Trust for Historic Preservation along with $500,000 back in October. The building had been named to the organization’s 2011 list of Places in Peril in May. The city’s requested that $150,000 be reserved to cover the cost of demolition in the event that a developer is not located that views the project as feasible.

According to the request for proposals retrieved from Operation New Birmingham’s website, submissions were due on January 9. A story published in The Birmingham News during the holidays suggests that the stabilization project is on schedule enabling potential developers to access the property for review in March. It was also reported that work was underway to design a roof to protect the remaining structure from any more damage due to weather.

Plan to save Birmingham’s Powell School on the table today

Powell School post fire. acnatta/FlickrSince we’ve already mentioned¬†The Birmingham News earlier, today a story was posted to their website talking about a possible plan in place to save the historic Powell School building in downtown Birmingham from the wrecking ball.

According to the piece, the proposal currently on the table for consideration by the City Council’s Budget and Finance Committee this afternoon would give the city’s oldest school building to the Alabama Trust for Historic Preservation. The city would give them up to six months to secure a developer and stabilize the structure or else the building would be demolished.

Sam Frazier is presenting the proposal on behalf of the Trust and he’s got personal experience in saving historic structures. He serves as chairman of Birmingham’s Design Review Committee, the National Trust for Historic Preservation advisor from Alabama and a member of the Alabama Trust’s board.

Needless to say that many people in the city are hopeful that the building can be saved, especially when you see how many blog posts and photos exist across the web sharing that sentiment. This list includes the front page of the Alabama Trust’s Spring 2011 newsletter. The school was named for the first president of the Elyton Land Company, the real estate company responsible for the city’s existence.

Photo: Powell School post fire. acnatta/Flickr