Local News

Durham Funeral Home, U-Haul Company May Have To Move In Name Of Progress

Posted January 13, 2004 9:59 a.m. EST

— A new $85 million six-story judicial building in Durham is several years away, but its proposed location is a controversy today. A U-Haul business and the Scarborough and Hargett Funeral Home on Mangum Street were told they have to move.

"When we move this time, it will be our seventh move. It will be our third forced move," funeral home owner John C. Scarborough said.

Scarborough said the county's choice for a location is an insult to a business that is served Durham more than 100 years.

"It's deemed the best location. Yes, there could be other locations that we could pursue, but clearly this is the one the county commissioners prefer," Durham County Manager Mike Ruffin said.

"Once we move from this area, there is no other place we can go to in the downtown area," Scarborough said.

The county has reserved nearly $3 million to purchase the funeral home and the U-Haul rental sites. If both sides fail to agree on the price, the county, by law, can condemn the land.

Funeral home officials also point out that replacement costs of starting over will far exceed what the county is willing to pay to purchase the land.