Monday night, the Anderson County Commission approved a resolution allowing the County mayor to make an exploratory offer to the owners of a building that could one day be used as the permanent home of the county’s Senior Center and Office on Aging.
The property, which is located in Andersonville, is reportedly valued at somewhere around $1 million, but the owners have indicated they would be willing to come down on the price if certain conditions are met, including that the facility only be used as a Senior Center. The resolution passed this week allows Mayor Terry Frank to offer up to $300,000 to the owners in order to exhibit the county’s interest and begin the process of negotiating.
The vote was 9-5 with two members absent, and came after a somewhat lengthy discussion.
Some commissioners remain wary of purchasing real estate for the senior center after the bungled purchase of 205 Main in Clinton in 2016 for $600,000. Initially described as the “perfect place” for a senior center, soon after the seniors moved in, problems including mold were found throughout the building, making it unsuitable for seniors. The Commission recently voted to put the property up for sale through a closed bidding process, while the senior center is in a too-small, and soon-to-be-sold building in Clinton. Bids are due to be unsealed in early April.
Others worried that locating the facility in Andersonville would “exclude” some county seniors for whom it might be too far of a drive, while another encouraged a “wait-and-see” approach as the city of Clinton has indicated its willingness to let the Office on Aging use the old Armory Building on the Fairgrounds as a senior center when the current tenant, Roane State Community College, moves its operation into the soon-to-be-constructed Tennessee College of Applied Technology–or TCAT–facility in the I-75 Industrial Park. Ground on the TCAT project is expected to be broken on Friday.
As we have been, we will continue to update you on this story as developments warrant.