Mayor and city council at odds on Cobb Hospital purchase

By Taylor Barnhill  - bio | email

PHENIX CITY, AL (WTVM) -  The old Cobb Hospital in Phenix City has been sitting vacant for years and now some members of the Phenix City council want to purchase the property.

It's estimated that it would take a few million dollars to purchase the property, get the old hospital torn down, and restore the land to be usable again.

While some members of city council are in favor of this big purchase, Phenix City Mayor Sonny Coulter says he is not supporting the decision, "At a previous meeting city council voted to take an option on the old Cobb Hospital property."

And Wednesday the council voted to spend more than $10,000 to have a professional asbestos survey taken on the old hospital.

"In order to perform "Due Diligence" and other things in looking at the property to see if it is in fact something this city council wants to do. It came to our attention that the old building probably has asbestos in it," explained Mayor Coulter.

Even if that report comes back clean, and the city council chooses to move forward with plans for the property. Not everyone in city government agrees with that decision. Coulter added, "As far as I'm concerned, I'm not in favor of purchasing the hospital building anyway. I think any money we spend on it is not money that is very well spent. However, with the majority of city council moving forward on this, if the city is going to, then we need to know what the situation is with asbestos and other things for that matter."

After the asbestos report comes back, then the city council will vote again on what the next step is, that is if everyone is on board with moving forward with the purchase.

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