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Walls come tumblin' down at old machine shop


Heavy equipment began tearing down the failing structure on Monday

by: RAY PITZ - Tearing down the old machine shop in Old Town Sherwood began in earnest Monday morning. By noon, about one-quarter of the facility had been taken down. The former machine shop in Old Town Sherwood is on its way down.

On Monday, work crews from Konell Demolition and Construction out of Sandy began tearing down the building, using heavy equipment to knock down and scoop up large chunks of the structure’s walls and ceiling.

The building had been on its to becoming the city’s new community arts center until last fall when structural damage to one of its bow trusses (estimated to be about five decades old) was discovered. A December tour of the building showed that one of the bow trusses had dropped several feet, having landed on top of electrical and gas lines. Deemed unsafe, the building was shored up by placing additional scaffolding under the remaining trusses and buttressing the exterior walls.

Over the last several weeks, work crews removed asbestos in the building.

The structure is mostly recyclable, according to Konell employees who said many of the large 2-by-10 beams were on their way to Japan to be sanded and refinished for a restaurant with a Western motif. The concrete and the old bow trusses will find new homes as well.

By noon on Monday, a gapping hole exposed chunks of wood, concrete, rebar and a dangling roof as heavy equipment continued to consume about one-quarter of the building.

The city is now working with Ankrom Moisan architects to come up with new design plans costing about $520,000 for construction of the $4 million center.

The cost of demolition is $70,000. It is expected to take three weeks to entirely demolish the building along with grading the site and laying down gravel, according to Assistant City Manager Tom Pessemier.