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Just because a building is deemed historic it doesn't mean it can't be demolished. Here's why

By Mark Brodie
Published: Tuesday, April 4, 2023 - 2:49pm

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Plaque that reads, "This property has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places by the United States Department of the Interior"
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A group of residents and business owners along Grand Avenue in Phoenix wants the city to stop plans to turn a church into apartments.

Mercy Hill Church was designed in the mid-1940s, but today needs millions of dollars worth of repairs. Church leaders agreed to sell the building and land to a developer, which plans to tear it down and build an apartment complex there.

The group trying to save elements of the building near Seventh Avenue and Fillmore Street will go before the Phoenix City Council on Wednesday to make their case. They also believe it’s eligible for historic listing.

But as Kathryn Leonard explained, that doesn’t necessarily mean a building can’t be demolished. Leonard is the state historic preservation officer in Arizona. She joined The Show to talk about the National Register of Historic Places and what exactly that status confers on a property.

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