Although plans to purchase the Wells Fargo building at 254 E. Moulton St. in downtown Decatur didn’t materialize, the Alabama Community College System still plans to put its first distance learning center in the River City.

ACCS Board of Trustees member Blake McAnally said Friday the system has selected a property to buy in Decatur and a closing on the purchase is expected soon.

“Before we spend any public money to buy property, we’re required to do complete due diligence and that’s where we are,” McAnally said.

Sen. Arthur Orr, R-Decatur, also confirmed that the learning center will be in Decatur.

“To the best of my knowledge, the project is moving forward and they are doing their due diligence,” he said.

The community college system announced in June that it had the 19,413-square-foot Wells Fargo building under contract for $800,000, but the cost to renovate the building was too much, McAnally said.

He said 24 colleges at more than 100 sites across the state have different ways of making online classes available, and the plan is to “create a center for excellence” with standardized online classes.

Colleges will have a shared server for online classes, and the center will train presenters and be a place where professors can create online videos, McAnally said.

“This center, in a more efficient way, will allow colleges to make contact with people from all over the state,” he said.

— or 256-340-2469. Twitter @DD_Deangelo.
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