Longstanding Centralia building to come down

1 year 5 months 1 week ago Monday, April 10 2017 Apr 10, 2017 Monday, April 10, 2017 2:02:00 PM CDT April 10, 2017 in News
By: Casey Edwards, KOMU 8 Digital Reporter
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CENTRALIA - After years of back and forth between property owner and city of Centralia, there is finally agreement on action to take with the old and unsafe Narragansett building: demolish it.

The building is missing many windows, walls, and the majority of its roof. Some parts of the surrounding sidewalks are covered in broken glass.

The building is over 100 years old, but the city declared the property “dangerous” in 2003.

According to Centralia City Administrator Matt Harline, property owner Clifford De la Rosa wanted to reconstruct the building and not demolish it.

According to city documents, De la Rosa called the declaration “grossly overbroad.” He has since agreed that demolition is necessary.

The city applied for a federal grant to fund the demolition, but Harline said De la Rosa plans to pay for it.

“That should be a win-win,” Harline said.

Harline did not know what the exact cost of demolition would be, but said De la Rosa is taking steps to make the process cheaper.

Not using the federal grant could make the demolition process not only cost less, but also faster. Harline said if the federal grant had been the source of funding, the project could have taken two years to complete. Because De la Rosa is funding it himself, the building will be down in six months.

According to city documents, De la Rosa received notices of pubic nuisance regarding the building in 2009 and 2012. Previous owner Frank Love also received the same notice from the city when he owned the Narragansett building.

One viewer reached out to KOMU and said demolition shouldn’t happen because the building is “historic.”

Harline said De la Rosa has 30 days to give a completed demolition permit to the city and then six months to demolish.

The city will require demolition to leave the land completely clear.

De la Rosa declined to comment.

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