WATERLOO — The city is preparing to tear down a fire-damaged neighborhood eyesore it acquired nearly five years ago.

Waterloo City Council members are scheduled to hold a public hearing Tuesday and approve a specialized demolition contract to raze the greystone apartment building at 925 Commercial St.

The city took title to the dilapidated building in 2014 but was unable to demolish it immediately. Squatters started two fires that damaged the building and boosted the demolition costs.

Typically the city hires a contractor to removed asbestos from a structure before it is torn down.

Now the building now will need to be removed as “regulated asbestos containing material.” RACM is a process requiring contractors to treat all of the debris as if it contains asbestos, keeping the site hosed down, wrapping trucks in plastic and taking other steps to prevent potential cancer-causing material from being release into the air.

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Zinser Co. of Walford was the apparent low bidder at $289,600 on the greystone demolition project, which also includes houses at 1107 Commercial St. and 613 W. Seventh St. ECCO Midwest Inc. of Cedar Rapids submitted a $306,500 bid.

The demolition costs will be paid with general obligation bonds, repaid with property taxes.

The meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Tuesday in the council chambers in City Hall. Other scheduled business includes:

  • A bid opening on plans to reconstruct Dysart Road from Orange Road north to near the Shaulis Road intersection and a block of West Second Street between Jefferson and Commercial streets downtown. The concrete reconstruction will be funded through the local-option sales tax.
  • Replacing the existing bicycle ordinance with a new set of rules designed primarily to promote safety.

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Waterloo City Reporter

Waterloo city reporter for the Courier

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