This story appeared as part of the 2010 Year In Review issue. The Daily Tar Heel resumes publication Jan. 10.
After the closing of the only Chapel Hill history museum, the town is evaluating how the building will be used — and how to preserve the town’s history without it.
The town is hosting several forums for public input on the future of the building that housed the Chapel Hill Museum, which sits at 523 E. Franklin St. The first was held Tuesday.
“We’ve been approached with a variety of ideas,” said Jeffrey York, town public arts administrator, at the first open house. “It’d be nice if it was a series of nonprofits connected with arts and culture.”
The museum closed in June and sold the last of its contents through an auction in October.
“That was the saddest day of my life,” said Doug Lay, a museum board member. “Countless, hundreds of volunteers had worked for the history of Chapel Hill.”
The museum asked for about $34,000 for museum upkeep for the 2010-2011 budget.
The town gave $22,500 for museum upkeep and $50,000 in capital improvements, which are allocated solely toward improvements on the building and not maintenance.
The future of the building on East Franklin Street is unclear, but town officials hope to gather feedback through the public meetings, surveys and suggestion drop-boxes.