Mount Pleasant library receives bid just minutes before online auction closes

MOUNT PLEASANT, TX (KLTV) - The historic former library in Mount Pleasant, put up for online auction by the city, received one bidder Tuesday morning, just minutes before the auction closed.

City Manager Mike Ahrens confirms the party submitted a bid for the full asking price of $175,000 just minutes before the 10 a.m. deadline.

The old library in Mount Pleasant has stood for nearly a century and some residents had expressed concern in the city's decision to auction it off.

The building first opened as a post office in 1925, then was converted to a library in the late 1960's. But after about 40 years of the building serving as the city's public library, the city decided to build a brand new facility just blocks down the road. The building has been vacant since the spring of 2012 and now the city says they do not need it anymore.

"We spent about four million dollars to build a new library located across from city hall," Ahrens said. "So with the library moving from that building to this building, that made it excess."

Some residents worried the auction could allow the building to be demolished, but the city said any buyer must agree to a set of covenants that would preserve the building.

"We realize the status and the symbol that the building means to Mount Pleasant, so we want to make sure we protected it as we put it in the private hands for better use," Ahrens said.

The covenants in the contract for the buyer only last for twenty years. After that, the decision for preservation is up to the new owner.

Ahrens said the city will take a look at the bid at Tuesday night's city council meeting and decide whether or not to accept the bid from the buyer.

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