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Group of developers propose multi-purpose facility at Bedford Middle School site

(WDBJ)
Published: Oct. 24, 2018 at 12:16 AM EDT
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New plans are being considered for the former Bedford Middle School Site.

On Tuesday night, a group of four developers presented plans to town council. “A boutique or more upscale hotel or lodging, maybe second to that would be more loft style apartments.”

Those are just some of the ideas that town resident Michael Okuley would like see at the site.

The former middle school building has been empty for about six months, but, folks in the community want to maintain its historical significance. “Everybody in the community has some sort of attachment to it, the Bedford Boys, most of them graduated from high school there," said town manager Bart Warner.

“And it’s beautiful," Okuley added. "It’s beautiful, the architecture on it… it’s in very good shape and it should stay that way.”

The campus consists of four buildings - including the old public school known as “Old Yellow.” “This is a perfect environment for continuing ed and developing a community," said local developer George Aznavorian during the group's presentation Tuesday night.

In addition to an education and athletic facility, the group also suggested the site be redeveloped for an arts and entertainment venue. “We do believe in the win-win of what we think that this could be," said Aznavorian.

A win-win, some say, as Bedford continues to grow. “I feel like Bedford is kind of on the cusp of a renaissance right now because there is so much growth with everything that’s going on, I mean we have a 16-thousand square foot brewery now… and no one would have thought that two years ago," said Okuley.

Right now, there is another developer the town is working with who is interested in turning the former middle school into a multi-family apartment building.

The group who presented on Tuesday, has until November 1 to formally submit plans to council.

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