BUTTE — A building has stood on East Park Street in Butte’s historic Uptown for more than 90 years, but regardless of its history, now it’s coming down.
“Demolition has to go on, the building is extremely dangerous. It has collapsed in several different areas. The second floor is basically gone,” said the Director of Community Enrichment Ed Randall.
The city had planned to tear down the building at 135 E. Park St. last week, but delayed the demolition after noticing some issues with its wall that is up against the neighboring building used by the Butte Rescue Mission Thrift Store.
“We want to get an engineer in there to look at the work to make sure that we’re doing the right things and everything we can to move this project forward,” said Randall.
The Council of Commissioners must approve a request this week to hire the engineer for $1,500 to inspect the building before demolition continues. The project is tricky because the building is sandwiched between two other historic buildings.
“Make sure we’re doing the right things by, first and foremost, protecting Butte-Silver Bow Citizens, but also protecting the buildings to the east and west of us,” said Randall.
While the city understands the importance of preserving its historic buildings, when a building gets in such disrepair though, the city claims public safety is more important than preservation.
“We don’t want to fight with historic folks, we hope that they understand that, through no fault of ours, these buildings are in the condition that they are and we have to deal with them because the government’s role is public safety,” said Randall.
Once the engineer’s review is approved, the demolition could continue within two weeks.