Concerned Citizen Shares His Opinion About Decision to Demolish - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: |

Concerned Citizen Shares His Opinion About Decision to Demolish Midland County Courthouse

By Sylvia Gonzalez
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND - Even with all of the excitement surrounding the revitalization of downtown Midland, there are some residents who'd like to keep the old courthouse from being destroyed.         

City leaders chose to pave the way for a new high-rise to be put in it's place. A local resident, who didn't want to be identified, says more should have been done to preserve the historic building.

"Once you demolish history, you can never replace it and a lot of people do not understand. You can build buildings that look like it, you can copy it but you no longer have the history attached to it," the concerned citizen, said.

He says it seems that anytime a city wants to revitalize their downtown area, they tear down the historic buildings. He says it's a mistake that can never be undone.

"We need to take those decisions very seriously and think long and hard before we demolish something that can not be replaced and Midland has a history of demolishing its historical structures," the concerned citizen, said. 

He tells NewsWest 9 before the courthouse is demolished, a one of a kind report must be done.

"The Historical Structure Assessment, its imperative that they do one, there's no way that anyone can adequately discuss the cost of preserving this building without having done a historic structure assessment," the concerned citizen, said.

Sharon Fleming, Director of the Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program, says when they heard of the possible sale of the Midland Courthouse they offered the county several options.

Those included a feasibility study to explore other options to reuse the building and a preservation covenant which would ensure that the building would not be demolished by a future owner. It also included a grant, which according to Fleming, the county refused to apply for.

"The building was eligible to participate in our grant program. Midland County would have been eligible to participate for that program grant and they were not interested in availing themselves of that opportunity," Fleming said.  

Fleming says as the Tall City continues to grow, there is always a place for preserving the old.

"With so much economic development in Midland County and in the City of Midland a historical courthouse would have been a great compliment to the new buildings, the new constructions and revitalization. It also includes the old and the new," Fleming said.

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