Some tear into plan for in-house demolition program

Augusta, Georgia Seal graphic
Augusta, Georgia Seal graphic

AUGUSTA,Ga (WJBF) 100  homes in Hyde Park are on the hit list, right now private contractors are preparing to tear down about two thirds of them

“We start with a ten day notice of intent to the state of Georgia and once that’s up we start our asbestos removal and once the asbestos removal is complete we start demo,” said Robert Chaplin Jr, one of Chaplin& Sons one of the companies preparing to tear down the houses.

But some city leaders believe Hyde Park would be a good place to test an in house demolition program.

“Because we own all the property in there we can’t damage anybody else’s property in the meantime so it’s a training ground,” said Commissioner Ben Hasan.

To get rid of the houses the city would use inmates and current city equipment, but that’s troubling to some.

“Biggest worry try to use equipment somebody is going to use somebody breaks something let the other person use it I didn’t break it,” says Commissioner Marion Williams.

Tearing down houses can run the city between six and seven thousand dollars, but even if the city created its own program it would still have to contract out the asbestos testing and removal that could run about two thousand dollars, eating into any city savings.

“If we could save five hundred to a thousand dollars per structure that’s a lot of money that’s a lot of money if we can do it for the ones we do tear down,” said Commissioner Hasan.

But those in the business say the city doesn’t know the demolition business, and say an in-house program could do more harm than help.

“I don’t think they could do it cheaper we have it down to a system not to mention the liability the city is going to face using inmates,” said Chaplin.

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