Mecklenburg County votes to preserve land near Sedgefield Middle School

- Mecklenburg County commissioners voted Tuesday to preserve the land near Sedgefield Middle School - and not develop it. 

The school board was discussing selling part of the land for residential development but the county stepped in. 

"Most people would say it's not worth fighting a lot for three acres...but when three acres is all you have…that serve almost 25,000 people then it's worth fighting for," Will Johns said, Sedgefield Neighborhood President. 

Johns told FOX 46 Charlotte there is not enough green space in the growing city. He is fighting to save the Sedgefield Middle School land behind his neighborhood - land that CMS plans to sell. 

"We don't want to live in a concrete jungle. We want to be able to stretch our legs and take our dog for a walk," Johns said. 

Johns started a petition 20 days ago when he found out land could go to apartment developers and has collected 1,500 signatures. He told FOX 46 Charlotte this piece of land is unique because it can be used by a school, a park, and connects many neighborhoods. 

"I know the space can be used for almost anything, except for the school, it's not going to be useable for the school," Tom Tate said, CMS Board of Education. 

Tate said her personally does not want to sell to a developer, but it's CMS' goal to get better use out of the land and put funds towards something that can benefit students and facilities.

"We can use it to build other schools. The money to build other schools...or to do renovations…or to do whatever we can," Tate explained. 

Now the fate of the land is in the hands of the county. Tuesday night the Mecklenburg County Council voted to either buy the land and save the green, or put the property on the market for potential developers. 

"Once they sell it they can start bulldozing the next day. It's money. But they have an opportunity tonight to come together and find that win-win compromise so everyone can keep the land for generations to come," Johns said. 

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