LAURINBURG — City officials continue to say they are unsure when the Barrett Building will come down, but work crews have already removed the concrete sidewalk leading up to the front of the 80-year-old house.
City Manager Charles Nichols said he is unsure of when actual demolition of the Barrett Building will begin because officials at Ediface — the construction management firm the city selected to handle to site work — have not shared that information with him.
“We do not have contact with the sub-contractors, that is all handled through Ediface,” Nichols said.
Construction crews began site work this week by removing the railings and tore out surrounding shrubs. The area is cordoned off by bright orange temporary fencing, which was also placed around the tress on the property that were being saved.
The city plans to raze the Barrett Building and the nearby municipal building housing city departments to build a multi-million dollar facility that would house all municipal offices under one roof.
The Barrett Building, housed multiple city departments — human resources, development, and the city manager and city clerk — before they were moved into the Sanford Building in June.
The former church parsonage, constructed in the 1930s, was named in the mid-90s after W. Charles Barrett, one of the longest serving mayor in Laurinburg’s history.
Those opposed to the demolition of the building plan to hold a vigil today at 7 p.m. The demonstration was originally scheduled for Monday, but severe weather caused the event to be moved.
Construction crews also removed the asbestos- filled side paneling.
Nichols said that the removal of the asbestos was required by the state before any further demolition could take place.
“We had the asbestos abatement taken care of last week,” Nichols said. “Asbestos was discovered in the white siding that was used in places on the building. Once the abatement was complete was turned the project over to Ediface and they were given to the green light to move forward with the project.”
Since the city of Laurinburg does not have a project manager or engineer on staff, officials turned to the state for assistance in selecting a construction management company that could handle the project.
“We don’t have the staff to coordinate all of those things to make sure everything is handled to how it’s supposed to be,” said Nichols. “So the project has been turned over to Ediface and they are coordinating all the sub-contractors and making sure the work is being done on schedule.”
Amber Hatten can be reached at 910-506-3170.