By Everett Brazil, III
The Newkirk Herald Journal
NEWKIRK — A building in the 100 Block of North Main Street has been under scrutiny lately, as city officials have moved to declare the structure ‘dilapidated,’ due to severe structural deficiencies on the front facade of the building. The city commission has since removed the proposal from the commission agenda due to efforts of building owner Austin Gregory to protect the façade and the building from further damage.
The commission voted to remove it from the agenda at the July 26 meeting.
The item has been discussed by the city commission since the May 24 meeting. The commission agreed to keep revisiting the issue as long as Gregory made efforts to not only secure the façade, but also keep the commission updated on the progress. As part of the agreement, Newkirk Fire Chief Adam Longcrier would do regular inspections of the progress.
Much of the damage to the facility was due to buckling of the structure in the front.
“The second story façade is made of limestone, and it has been protruding for a number of years at the middle of the limestone,” said commissioner Joe Anderson. “It was always a concern, but it’s become more of a concern in recent years.”
Several ideas were presented to protect the facility, and it was eventually agreed upon to protect the façade from the inside.
“He’s stabilized it with a turnbuckle system, I-beams and heavy crane cable,” Longcrier said. “He’s holding onto the outside from the inside, and not causing the building to collapse. I believe it’s a safe procedure, and is going to work.”
Hearing the updates on the building, the commission voted to remove it from the agenda and to not declare it ‘dilapidated,’ after a discussion of the definition of the term.