City advertising for bids to tear down former Charles Tisdale Library

The homeless have ransacked the Charles Tisdale Library on East Northside Drive. The building...
The homeless have ransacked the Charles Tisdale Library on East Northside Drive. The building is owned by the city.
Published: Aug. 4, 2022 at 12:51 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - More than five years after it closed, the city of Jackson is seeking bids to demolish the building that housed the former Charles Tisdale Library.

The city recently began advertising for bids for the demolition and cleaning of the property located at 807 E. Northside Dr.

Bids are due at the City Clerk’s Office by Tuesday, August 23, at 3:30 p.m.

“That’s a step in the right direction,” said Ward 1 Councilman Ashby Foote.

Foote has been an advocate of tearing down the structure for years. “We’ve got a problem with blight in the city, and the last thing we need to do is let our own stuff turn to blight,” he said. “I applaud [the administration] for taking action on this.”

Tisdale closed in the spring of 2017 due to a black mold infestation and flooding issues. The Jackson/Hinds Library System turned the building back over to the city in late 2019.

Since then, the former library branch has been ransacked by vagrants, who have knocked out windows, strewn books across the library floor, and taken out materials to sell. The branch also has become a dumping ground for shopping carts and other debris.

Meanwhile, the branch’s basement has flooded numerous times, with city crews having to come in and pump out water.

At one point, the Lumumba administration had considered selling the building. It is currently unclear what the city’s plans are for the property once it is cleaned up. Planning and Development Director Jordan Hillman was not immediately available for comment.

“We need to do a better job of maintaining our own facilities and being a good example for other folks who have properties out there that need repairs,” Foote said. “I’m ashamed it came to this point, but it doesn’t make sense to let it sit there and get worse.”

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