84-year-old gym in Missouri City gets long-awaited upgrade

MISSOURI CITY, Texas (KTRK) -- Earlier this month, a groundbreaking at the aging gymnasium that once belonged to Missouri City Middle School marked the beginning of a renovation several years in the making.

Back in 2016, the Fort Bend County Commissioners Court voted to take over ownership of one of the town's oldest buildings.

It wasn't until this year that the renovation began movement.

"Our plans are to turn this building into a community center," said Ft. Bend County Commissioner Grady Prestage.

Located at the corner of Louisiana and First streets, the gymnasium was built in 1935 as a part of Missouri City High School when Missouri City and Sugar Land still had their own school districts, he said. The two districts consolidated to create FBISD on April 18, 1959, and Missouri City High School became the new district's white secondary school, according to FBISD.

Black high school students were brought back to the building from M.R. Wood School in Sugar Land with desegregation in 1965, according to the district. Missouri City High School became Missouri City Junior High School in 1975, but the gymnasium remained in use.

FBISD opened the current Missouri City Middle School in August 2008, according to the district. A group of Missouri City High alumni formed to save the gymnasium from demolition.

The building was boarded up in 2009.

Officials hope to have the renovations completed and the new community center in use next year.

Community Impact Newspaper contributed to this report.

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