View Full Version : Infamous building comes tumbling down - Spenard

Oct 18, 2003, 7:36 PM

Wrecking crew demolishes burned-out Trapline building

Anchorage, Alaska, Oct. 17 - The walls began tumbling down Friday on the burned-out shell of the old Trapline Escort and Dating Service. The building on West 27th Avenue has long been on the city's list of community eyesores, and it's also been the recent target of two arson investigations.

So far, the city has been unable to locate the owner or owners of the Spenard building to force them to take responsibility for safety issues, and the cost of the cleanup effort.
City officials say they've made several attempts, to no avail. Now, for safety reasons, they can't wait any longer.
The sun rose for the last time Friday morning on the abandoned building, which has been involved in two recent suspicious fires.
"I'm calling the fire incendiary," said Anchorage Fire Department inspector Greg MacDonald. "That means it was set by someone."
It has long been a blight on the community.
"It's just kind of an eyesore, kind of a big ghost sitting there," said Kevin Payne, who lives next door. "It's been there for so many years and everything, and ever since it burned down, it's been an eyesore."
Anchorage officials determined the structure to be unsafe. Even though they haven't been able to contact the building's owner, they made the decision to bring the walls down and clear the property.
So who picks up the tab?

"The Assembly generously put forward the money," MacDonald said. "The contractor was hired for roughly half that amount. That's wonderful. And we will go back on the property owners to recover, so this won't cost the citizens of Anchorage anything."
The demolition bid came in at $49,000, some $45,000 less than expected. For now, taxpayers are bearing that cost, until either the owner steps forward or the property is sold in a lien sale.
"The property will be liened for the cost of the demolition, so before it can be sold or improved or have anything else done with it, that bill will have to be settled," said city building official James Gray.
Under normal conditions, the city can use fines or penalties to force a building's owner to make sure a structure is safe. In this case, the city was forced to take immediate and appropriate action.
"The process of taking down a building like this is pretty onerous, and I think the public sometimes doesn't understand it," said Gray. "But the way I like to tell people is that tearing a building down is the absolute last recourse that we have, because we can't undo that."
What happens to the property now is anyone's guess, although long-time neighbor Payne has his hopes set on something for the entire community.
"I wouldn't mind seeing something for the community, something like a park, someplace to go besides all just business in here and stuff like that," he said. "Just somewhere nice where people can go sit and enjoy themselves."
So, as quickly as the walls came tumbling down, city officials say it's only the beginning to recovering the costs and moving on to cleaning up other neighborhoods.
Construction officials say they took precautions to check the building for dangerous materials like asbestos, before they begin disposing of the remains. They also say they expect the demolition process to take about three to five days.
Fire officials Friday still could not confirm that a person involved in a fight near the building two weeks ago might not still be in the building. One other person, who was found inside a locked door as firefighters put out a suspicious blaze Oct. 4, had to be hospitalized with smoke inhalation.
Suspecting there might be someone else who had died inside, authorities wanted to search. But the remains of the building were so dangerous that they could not.

Oct 19, 2003, 5:02 PM
Hey thats in your neighborhood :D Was that one of your cruising spots ;)

Oct 19, 2003, 8:07 PM
So the building had some problems, how can you just ignore the great history and tradition associated with it?:cry:

I suppose you're going to tell me the city wants to get rid of the adult book/video stores too. :dunno:

Oct 19, 2003, 9:24 PM
^Ex, actually we are getting rid of a XXX store which has a thread near the bottom of this subforum ;)


the reason why it was demolished is because kids can wonder in there and crime is always looming around the abandoned buildings here in Spenard. This year the mayor and the spenard community council will wreck 6 buildings including a 2 story pink hotel which caught on fire 4 times.

and yes my cruising spot is now gone :dunno: :nuts:

Oct 19, 2003, 10:03 PM
I'm sorry :(

Oct 19, 2003, 10:45 PM
no need for pity thankyou :no: :D

Oct 20, 2003, 9:38 AM
Geez, doing away with a house of ill-repute just for the safety of some kids. When will the madness end?;)