CHAPEL HILL — The Town Council OK’d redeveloping a 1950s fire station and surrounding land but put the future of a longtime East Franklin Street landmark on hold.
Chapel Hill Fire Station No. 2, located near Glen Lennox at 1003 S. Hamilton Road is the first of three stations on highly developable property that could be replaced.
The town is seeking a public-private partnership with a developer who could house a temporary replacement for the Hamilton Road station while a new fire station is built.
Similar partnerships could help replace stations on Elliott and Weaver Dairy roads in the future.
Other properties under consideration for redevelopment or sale include the Chapel Hill Police Station on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, the former Town Hall (currently a shelter for Inter-Faith Council) on West Rosemary Street, and the former Chapel Hill Public Library/Chapel Hill Museum on East Franklin Street.
The council will discuss early next year what to do with the library building, now home to the Chapel Hill Historical Society.
If the council agrees to sell the building, staff could work with Preservation North Carolina to find a buyer. The town signed an agreement with Preservation North Carolina in 2007 to protect the building, located in the Franklin-Rosemary Historic District, from demolition.
Susan Worley, a member of the historical society’s board of directors, asked the town to reconsider.
“Once this building’s gone, it will be too late to get it back,” she said. “Two years, or 20 years, or 50 years down the road, the money from the sale will be long gone and the building that could have been a focal point to celebrate our community will have been turned into … a cookie-cutter office building, like so many we already have.”