Berke Says Sale Of Harriet Tubman Housing Site Will Make A Difference For City As A Whole

Tuesday, March 11, 2014 - by Hollie Webb
- photo by Hollie Webb

In a press conference given in response to the Chattanooga Housing Authority's acceptance of the city's bid to buy the Harriet Tubman housing site, Mayor Andy Berke said, "When I took office almost a year ago, I said I was going to create stronger neighborhoods and grow the economy. Today we took another step forward in that vision."

The city plans to make the site a light industrial zone after the demolition, in order to bring jobs to the area.

Mayor Berke said bringing jobs would "drive this neighborhood forward and make a difference for our city as a whole."

The site is approximately 36 acres of land and is near Amnicola Highway as well as the railroad. He emphasized that this was ideal for economic prospects in the market to build.

He said, "I'm proud to say we've been working tirelessly with people throughout the city to make this happen."

Mayor Berke told the media as soon as the purchase of the site is approved by the City Council, the city will begin to put together a process and a timeline as well as getting bids for the demolition. The estimated cost of the demolition is $2 million. However, he said, "The next stage here is closing."

When asked why he was against putting more public housing in the site, Mayor Berke replied that is was more about what he was for than what he was against. He said, "You think about what's going to benefit this neighborhood, and it's jobs." He also said the housing had a high vacancy rate in the past.

- Photo2 by Hollie Webb

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ALEXANDER, MELANIE SYDNEY 816 ASTERWOOD DRIVE ROSSVILLE, 30741 25 Chattanooga POSSESSION OF CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE - MARIJUANA BAXTER, TRAVIS MATTHEW 1330 GREENSLAKE ROAD EAST RIDGE, 37412 22 East Ridge AGGRAVATED DOMESTIC ASSAULT W/VEHICLE POSSESSION OF DRUG PARAPHERNALIA BELL, CHARLIE ... (click for more)

Deputy Beaten After Vehicle Crashes In His Yard Sues Officers

A man who was mistakenly beaten by officers who had been pursuing a pickup truck that crashed into his home has sued Hamilton County and the officers for $700,000. Aaron Lucas Shelton and his wife, Heather Nicole Shelton, filed the suit in Circuit Court. Aaron Shelton is himself a deputy sheriff. It names Curtis Brian Killingsworth and unknown officers who allegedly took part ... (click for more)

We Ought To Pay Our Own Way

The government is too big. It has never been bigger - by any measure. It spends more money than any other single actor in our society. From Blue Rhinos to providing telecommunications services, our government knows no bounds. We’ve gone from a free enterprise system to a public enterprise system.  I'm not an artist. I'm not terribly tech savvy. The part of government that ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Secret Train Ride

It was during Christmas of 2003 when Bennett Levin and his wife found themselves talking and worrying about the wounded soldiers at the Walter Reed Military Hospital in Bethesda, Md., and at the nearby Bethesda Naval Hospital. Their wish was that they could do something meaningful, something really grand, for the soldiers who had lost limbs, their eyesight, and far worse. As ... (click for more)

Villavic, Henderson Win Scenic City Half-Marathon Titles

(Complete results will be posted later today for both races) It was just a little bit nippy at Finley Stadium for Saturday morning’s running of the Scenic City Half-Marathon and 5K, but it was probably just about perfect for those who decided to compete. Cristian Villavic, a 42-year-old professional runner from Nicaragua who is currently living in Manchester with his coach, ... (click for more)

Baylor Wrestlers Murphy, Seagraves in National Prep Semis

On the strength of placing two wrestlers in Saturday morning's championship semis, Baylor School is in 11th place (46 pts) at the National Prep Wrestling Championship held this weekend in Lehigh, Pa. Saturday Semis: Baylor junior and three-time state champ Michael Murphy has won three matches (two falls, one sudden death) and meets top seeded Matthew Colodzik (Blair Academy) ... (click for more)