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Tulsa Public Schools Weighs Bid For Closed Site

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Wilson Middle School is located at 1127 South Columbia Avenue in Tulsa. Wilson Middle School is located at 1127 South Columbia Avenue in Tulsa.
Picture of the campus at the University of Tulsa. Picture of the campus at the University of Tulsa.
Trish Williams, Chief Financial Officer for Tulsa Public Schools. Trish Williams, Chief Financial Officer for Tulsa Public Schools.

Ashli Sims, News On 6

TULSA, Oklahoma -- Tulsa Public Schools has received a multi-million dollar offer for a midtown middle school. Wilson Middle School only received one bid, from the University of Tulsa, but it may not be the financial windfall TPS needs.

"Many people would consider TU a pretty good neighbor. Haven't' always been. But the last few years they've done so much to improve the campus. I would say that might be my first choice," Tom Neal, of the Renaissance Neighborhood Association, said.

But the University of Tulsa may be the district's only choice. It was the only organization to bid on Wilson Middle School.

The district is unloading the property as part of its historic overhaul, which consolidated more than a dozen schools.

Facing a $17 million shortfall, the district is hoping to cash in by selling the as many as nine newly vacant buildings.

6/16/2011 Related Story: Bidding Process Begins For Closed Sites At Tulsa Public Schools

"They are certainly interested in getting a good financial deal for the district, but it has to be a good deal for the community. so we will have to balance those interests as we go through the process," Trish Williams, Chief Financial Officer for Tulsa Public Schools, said.

The University of Tulsa is offering $2 million to turn the building into a new home for TU academic programs and support. But a legal snag could take the wind out of the Hurricane's latest expansion effort.

The university's offer doesn't even cover the district's bond investment in the building.

Williams told News On 6 the district has paid more than $3 million to improve Wilson. She also says that bond money must be paid back, if the building is sold.

Tulsa School Board members have previously said if the price wasn't right, they may not sell at all.

Tulsa Public Schools is having a meeting at Kendall-Whittier next Tuesday, July 12, 2011, to hear the community's thoughts on the possible sale of Wilson Middle School.

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