Morenci mayor Keith Pennington said that some remediation of contaminated soil is expected, but the work will be part of the demolition process.
The building is scheduled to be torn down for the creation of a parking area north of Johnson’s Hardware. The alley used for deliveries to the hardware will be widened and additional parking will be created for the residents of apartments in the area.
Pennington expects the work on the parking area to be completed this year along with the rebuilding of the city parking lots on the south side of Main Street. He said the parking lot where the Dunbar building stands is slated for a n initial gravel surface this year, but that could change.
“We will see how the bids for the whole project come in and make a decision in a couple of months.”
With the favorable environmental report, the city can move forward in purchasing the building and seek demolition bids.
The Observer office might become the last commercial building standing in the area due to problems with old Dr. Raabe office.
Larry and Beverly Sines recently bought the Raabe building from Ken Richardson and Sines said he hopes to preserve the main structure.
The building was tagged May 5 as condemned by building inspector Kevin Arquette due to continued deterioration of the back portion of the building. Sines will have that portion removed and then take a close look at the remainder of the structure.
“I’d like to save it and fix it,” he said. “It’s part of Morenci’s heritage.”
If he determines the building can be preserved, he aims to rebuild the overhang that fell last year when it was struck by a truck.
The building is known as Lenawee County’s first private hospital.