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Developer with plans to turn Hungerford site into mixed income housing drops out of contract

Hungerford High yearbook photo circa 1965.
Abandoned Florida
Hungerford High yearbook photo circa 1965.

Orange County Public Schools says a contract it had with a local developer to turn the site of the former Hungerford School into mixed housing has fallen through.

The news comes just days after the Association to Preserve the Eatonville Community sued the district over its plans for the site.

The school district says it won't entertain other bids for the site.

But OCPS says it also won’t consider donating the land.

N.Y. Nathiri is Director of the Association to Preserve the Eatonville Community, the nonprofit that sued the district.

She said her vision for the land is slightly different.

“I think that once solid research is done, research that reflects almost 70 years of history," Nathiri said. "I'm hopeful that the Orange County School Board will see its way clear to engage constructively in a community land trust, return of the land.”

After all, Nathiri said, this story is about so much more than land reclamation.

“Because we're talking here about inheritance," said Nathiri. "We're talking about economic development based on the land as a resource. And so I see this in a stepwise process.”

The Hungerford School was the first school for Black children in Central Florida.

Danielle Prieur covers education in Central Florida.
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