School board and the city could be at odds on this deal.
At first glance an offer on an under utilized piece of property seems like a good thing but as with all things Richmond it’s not so cut and dry.
The offer was unsolicited and came in at $1.6 million dollars the problem is that Richmond Public Schools holds the title of the building and the city holds the land. Nothing can move forward unless the two parties come to an agreement. The last agreement that the city and RPS came to resulted in RPS losing a valuable chunk of land and getting much less in return.
Money from the sale of surplus school property is used for school improvements, but school officials got a hard lesson in loopholes two years ago when the property they viewed as their most valuable, the old Westhampton School at Patterson and Libbie avenues — assessed at $7.6 million — was leased by the city rather than sold.
School Board Vice Chairwoman Kristen Larson of the 4th District said board members needed to have a conversation about the offer as well as a recent third-party assessment of the property.
“This could be a good starting point for discussions with City Council to ensure that we’re all working in the same direction,” she said.
“I think there still needs to be some clarity on what it means to surplus property and what the city does to help us get the best offer.”
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