Archives for November 2017

Demolition Begins in Downtown Klamath Falls

Main Street Demolition

Chris Young has painted several murals in Klamath Falls, one of which was recently slated to come down along the 1100 block of Main Street.

Several citizens voiced their concerns to Sky Lakes Medical Center, which now owns the properties, and Klamath Falls City Council. However, the muralist’s work would still be honored — Sky Lakes officials say Young will work with the medical center and city to help with some of the new park designs as the project moves forward.

“The mural was near and dear to people’s hearts,” said Lauren Jespersen, director of the Sky Lakes Foundation.


Main Street Demolition
Crews work to demolish a building downtown along Main Street on Tuesday in preparation for construction of a new park. The side of the building previously displayed a large mural painted by Chris Young in 2010.

H&N photo by Brittany Hosea-Small

Demolition of the properties at 1112 and 1114 Main St. began Tuesday afternoon. As part of the process, the left travel lane of Main Street and corresponding parking lane and sidewalks between 11th and 12th streets will be closed through Wednesday, Dec. 6.

Left turns from 11th street to Main Street will be accommodated with a transition into the Main Street right lane, according to a news release from the city. Normal travel should resume prior to the upcoming Snowflake Parade on Thursday, Dec. 7.

Crafting a ‘green space’

The decision to have Young contribute to the project follows after several community members voiced concerns about either trying to save or at least commemorate the mural on the 1112 Main St. side of the property.

Sky Lakes entered a leasing agreement to purchase the 1.4 acre lot of land along Klamath Avenue and 11th Street after city council voted 4-1 to support the plans in May.


Main Street Demolition
Crews work to demolish a building downtown along Main Street on Tuesday in preparation for construction of a new park. The side of the building previously displayed a large mural painted by Chris Young in 2010.

H&N photo by Brittany Hosea-Small

The project itself serves as a memorial park for Dr. Stephanie Van Dyke, who originally worked with Sky Lakes Wellness Center Director Katherine Pope on proposing the downtown green space.

“It was then sort of put on the back burner, but a project we always wanted to move forward with,” Jespersen said.

Sky Lakes first looked into purchasing a single building for the green space project, but it became more cost effective to purchase all interconnected properties to avoid greater demolition costs, according to Jespersen.

Mural concerns

The detailed mural depicted several timber workers and a horse in a wooded area. City Councilor Kendall Bell said on Nov. 6 that money from the Klamath Falls Downtown Association (KFDA) helped pay for the piece.


Main Street Demolition
Crews work to demolish a building downtown along Main Street on Tuesday in preparation for construction of a new park. The side of the building previously displayed a large mural painted by Chris Young in 2010.

H&N photo by Brittany Hosea-Small

Resident Art Belsky told city councilors that evening that he had concerns of downtown maintaining a “historic flavor” in the community. Belsky added that he also had some family reunion photos taken at the mural site. At the time, no solutions could be presented to help preserve the mural itself.

Todd Kepple, Klamath County Museums manager, said the mural has always been one of his favorites, but that he and other residents would face whatever changes needed to take place.

“I visited (Young) one day while he was working on it and got a whole new appreciation for what a challenge it is to do the strokes when you are standing about 18 inches away from the wall,” Kepple said.

Jespersen said Sky Lakes officials have decided to move forward with the entire block becoming a downtown park, adding that it could also be listed as an inventory item for the Klamath Falls parks master plan in the works.

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Public Library Demolition

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Demolition around the Missoula Public Library is underway and more than half of the $5 million goal toward a new library building has been raised through private funds.

Library foundation director and development coordinator Karl Olson said fundraising stands at $3.6 million, and he’s optimistic the goal will be reached.

“We’re really proud of what we achieved so far,” Olson said.

He added there is a soft deadline of early next year to have the money raised, and the project remains in the major donor phase of the project.

Brick Clock Tower Demolition

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) – What once was a landmark that welcomed visitors to Rockford will soon be reduced to rubble. Attorneys for the new owners of the Clock Tower Resort say demolition will begin next month.

We are learning the demolition will begin within the next few weeks with the bulk of the work taking place throughout December.

Following the $3 million sale of the resort back in May, Ringland Johnson CEO Brent Johnson, one of the several new owners of the property, said demolition would cost between one and one and a half million dollars.

Ian Linnabary, an attorney with Reno and Zahm, who serves as counsel for the new owners says in a written statement, “The property had become a real eyesore and needed to be demolished to make way for new construction.”

The demolition of the former Macy’s Department Store

ALTON – The demolition of the former Macy’s Department Store building adjacent to the Alton Square Mall is going on schedule, Alton Mayor Brant Walker said Wednesday morning.

Fencing, demolition equipment and piles of debris currently surround the 200,000 square foot former retailer. Walker said The Hull Group, a Georgia-based firm, which currently owns the Alton Square Mall property, is footing the bill for the project out of its own coffers, adding TIF funds would be coming soon. In previous interviews with, Alton Building and Zoning Director Greg Caffey said the demolition process will take anywhere from 60-90 days.

Once the building has been demolished, the 14 acres where it once stood will be seeded with grass and will be marketed as “premium retail space” facing Homer Adams Parkway.

“When they get that out of the way, it gives them a clean slate of 14 acres facing the Homer Adams Parkway,” Walker said in previous interviews with “It is definitely in the interest of that side of the mall.”

Demolition is being done by Hull Group’s general contractor, South Carolina-based Low Country Unlimited, which has subcontracted the work to local firms.

This demolition is part of the Hull Group’s $22 million development plan for the Alton Square Mall, which was released in April 2017. The plan includes dividing the first and second floor of the mall and place smaller stores on the lower floor and larger box retail and unconventional retailers on the second floor.

A movie theater was also proposed in the investment plan.

“We have ownership very experienced in retail, and they are looking to do a plan,” Walker said in previous interviews. “It’s kind of sad to see some things go, but I’m happy to see it getting refitted and ready to go again instead of closing. It’s going to be fun to see that mall come back to life.”

Georgia Dome’s demolition

5,000 pounds of explosives used to implode Georgia Dome in Atlanta

The photo has been on the refrigerator for years, of two young Maryland fans standing in enemy territory two days after the Terps won the 2002 national title over Indiana at the Georgia Dome.

After the family drove halfway home, stopping overnight in Greensboro, N.C., their father made an unexpected pit stop in nearby Durham to take a picture in their Maryland gear, with the Duke chapel as the backdrop.

The boys, ages 8 and 13, signaled that Maryland was No. 1, except they didn’t use their index fingers to do it. My sons are now 29 and 24 and I will never forget that picture or the night in Atlanta that inspired it.

The memories came back Monday after the Georgia Dome was demolished by 5,000 pounds of explosives as the $1.6 billion Mercedez Benz Stadium has taken over the neighborhood.

5,000 pounds of explosives used to implode Georgia Dome in Atlanta
In their mind’s eye, most Maryland fans can still see Juan Dixon breaking a long scoring drought with a huge jumper to regain the lead and start the run that led to a 64-52 win.

They can still see Gary Williams climbing the ladder to cut the last piece of the net, then twirling it in the air over his head. They can see the confetti falling from the rafters and Williams holding his grandson.

There are other memories for me, too.

I was there six years before for the 1996 Olympic Games, where the U.S.’ real “Dream Team” were a bunch of tough female gymnasts who finally took home the gold, beating Russia on the strength of Kerri Strug’s landing despite two torn ligaments in her ankle.

Where are they now: National champion 2001-02 Maryland men’s basketball team
I was there in 1998 when Tennessee quarterback Tee Martin solidified his legacy with the Vol Nation by throwing two touchdowns to help beat Mississippi State. A month later, Martin did what Peyton Manning never did in Knoxville — win it all.

There are some Maryland fans who were also there twice in 2002 — first for the national championship and then in December for the Peach Bowl, to see Ralph Friedgen’s team win its 11th game of the season by dismantling Tennessee, 30-3, in the Peach Bowl.

But that early spring weekend in 2002 is what I remember the most.

A year after fulfilling a promise to my older son of taking him to the Final Four if the Terps ever made it, I had to then do the same for my younger son, whose obsession with Dixon and the Terps was already fully developed. We packed up the family van and headed to Atlanta, where I was covering the Final Four for The Sun.

The tickets I had purchased through the NCAA for them were so high up in the Georgia Dome that from where they were sitting, it was hard to distinguish between Dixon and Lonny Baxter except for the numbers on the backs of the jerseys.

Juan Dixon forges relationship with the father he didn’t know existed
For years afterward, my wife talked about how she had never seen so many grown men cry, unable to grasp the magnitude of their suffering from watching some of Lefty Driesell’s best teams denied the opportunity of even making the NCAA tournament.

For years afterward, my younger son seemed not to remember much about the game itself, and more about his unending search for Dippin’ Dots at various concession stands. It took watching an ESPN Classic replay for him to realize what he had witnessed.

As much as I can recall parts of the game and the post-game interviews — particularly talking with Dave Dickerson, then a first-year assistant under Williams whose playing career at Maryland began when Len Bias was a senior — I mostly remember the trip back home.

Five Points Hotel Demolition

The Hydro's dome is pulled down as the crowd watches from the Piazza.

A staple to Downtown Atlanta for more than 70 years. Five Points’s began in 1946 when Joe Caparulo’s father decided to open up a convenience store.

When Cappy’s was originally put on the market Dick Reidy saw it as an opportunity and purchased the building from Joe Caparulo and his sister. Amani Vlasic owned a gift shop which filled the retail space where Cappy’s was and there were two upper apartments that were rented out for four years. Vlasic decided to closer her shop and the building was put on the market once again to either lease or buy. The owners of the building offered to donate the building to Elmira College who already owned the building that sat directly behind Cappy’s. It was with the understanding that both buildings would be razed and be created into a green space. This entire project will become a reality sooner rather than later.

Demolition on Cappy’s began this afternoon and is set to conclude on Monday morning.

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Demolition of Bay Bridge’s

FILE PHOTO: Pier E3 of the old Bay Bridge is imploded below the surface of the bay in San Francisco, Calif. on Saturday, Nov. 14, 2015. Photo: Paul Chinn, The Chronicle

Demolition of the marine foundations of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge’s old eastern span finished up this morning with just one small blip caused by an errant seal, a Caltrans spokesman said.