What will become of the old Topsail High School land?

Reported by Gavin Johnson - bio|email
Posted by Debra Worley - email

PENDER COUNTY, NC (WECT) - The old Topsail High School off Highway 17 was built more than 80 years ago, but it hasn't been used for at least a year.

The building sits on ten acres of land that some say is a hot spot for real estate, so what could happen to the school?

Every day Patricia Moffitt picks up her 5-year-old granddaughter from preschool.  The bus stops at the old high school.

Moffitt says seeing the school is a daily history lesson for the little one.

"I like to say hey, this school is different from the school you go to, because it was probably used for as one total school from kindergarten to 12th grade," said Moffitt.

The 84-year-old building has been used for a number of things since 1925.  Classrooms were originally built for public school and later Cape Fear Community College students, and many groups have used it as a meeting place.

Today, many believe keeping the school would be more trouble than it's worth.

"With the asbestos, and this old building - it would be very hard for a group to try and something out of it," said Pender County Commissioner David Williams.

Not only does the building sit on 10 acres of land, it is off Highway 17, which is one of the busiest roadways in Pender County.

Williams said there is a lot that can be done with the property.

"We can do a lot with ten acres," said Williams.  "We have water on the property but not sewer. We've had groups look at buying the ten acres and the property behind it."

Moffitt would like to see the building saved - she doesn't want to landmark to become history.

"If it can be saved without spending a lot of money and maybe use it for something that's being cut now that would be good," said Moffitt.

County commissioners say once the economy improves, they expect bids to start coming in for the property.

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