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October 26, 2011

Mayor Annise Parker Announces Plan to Preserve Historic Rufus Cage Elementary School

Mayor Annise Parker announces the City's acquisition of the 100 year old historic Rufus Cage Elementary School from the Houston Independent School District (HISD). The City will pursue Protected Landmark designation to prohibit demolition of the school.

In early October, HISD trustees voted to convey ownership of the property to the City in exchange for a credit of $100,000 that HISD may use to obtain City rights of way or other property the district may need in the future. The arrangement received approval from Houston City Council Wednesday, October 26, 2011.

The school, one of the oldest in HISD, was built in 1910 and is named after long-time Houston School Board Member Rufus Cage. It is part of a triangular block surrounded by Telephone Road, Baird Street and Claremont Avenue. The southeastern portion of the triangular block with the two-story, four-room brick school building and adjacent small auditorium is approximately 28,700 square feet. The block also includes a large warehouse.

Mayor Parker's office, Council Member James Rodriguez and Council Member Melissa Noriega have worked closely with HISD School Board Member Juliet Stipeche, area residents and civic associations who formed the Historic Rufus Cage Educational Alliance (HRCEA). HRCEA had feared the building would be torn down if HISD followed through on an earlier plan to sell the property to private ventures.

HISD has statutory authority to donate surplus schools and improvements to a municipality, county, state agency or nonprofit organization.

The school building served as a public school until 1983, when the new Rufus Cage Elementary School was constructed on a nearby site.

For more information email Minnette.Boesel@houstontx.gov or call her at 832.393.1097.



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