In a surprise move, the Meridian City Council on Tuesday night approved the sale of the old police station on 6th Street to Threefoot Brewery owner John Purdy.
Four out of five council members voted yes, with Ward 5 City Councilman Weston Lindemann abstaining.
“It feels good obviously, but there are still a lot of challenges ahead,” said Purdy, who plans to convert the courtroom area into a tap room and the additional space to other businesses. “I’m pretty sure we’re just getting started.”
At the March 6 City Council meeting, Lindemann tabled a motion to sell the building to Purdy for $45,000.
Lindemann told The Meridian Star on Monday that he wanted to review the results of a student-led Mississippi State University feasibility study — scheduled to publish next month — before moving forward
What’s more, after receiving dozens of emails, Lindemann learned that Purdy wasn't the only interested party, contrary to what the the mayor’s office told the council, he said.
“I’m going to let the educational process play out,” Lindemann said, adding that he would like the council to consider “surplussing the building and entertaining the offers that come at that point.”
But after Monday’s work session, the rest of the council decided Purdy’s plan was in the city’s best interest.
Ward 4 City Councilwoman Kim Houston said her biggest concern was the lack of communication, and she suggested that the city post properties available for sale online.
“I think at some point … when people have the tools in place, we need to just go ahead and make a decision,” Houston said prior to the vote.
In other businees, the council approved plans for Meridian’s next downtown park. The proposed park will be constructed on 3,000 square feet of city-owned land on 7th Street, across from Meridian Museum of Art.
Associated with the city's art museum, the park is expected to blend arts, nature and educational experiences for the community, especially children. The anticipated cost is $12,000 for design, materials and other expenses. Use of city employees for project labor will help offset expenses.
— Reporter Robbie Ward contributed to this report.