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Downey : Caltrans Razes 6 Houses

November 20, 1986

In September, angry residents in the Century Freeway corridor asked city and state Department of Transportation officials to demolish six vacant houses on Adoree Street.

On Monday, they got their wish.

Wrecking crews tore down the houses, which were bought by Caltrans in 1980, because they were in the path of the proposed freeway but were declared excess property in 1981 after the freeway was scaled down from 10 lanes to 6.

Residents complained that the houses attracted vandals and vagrants.

"It really is a relief," said Kathy Englehart. "Some residents want a park here and some want to see new houses, but for the time being, I'm just happy to look at an open field."

The land will be offered for sale to the city, county and other public agencies before being sold at a public auction, said Pierson L. Pedley, senior Caltrans right-of-way agent.

Pedley said excess land is normally sold after the freeway is completed.

Caltrans officials estimate that the eastern end of the 17-mile-long freeway between Bellflower Boulevard and the San Gabriel River Freeway will be complete in 1990.

Downey and Caltrans officials met two weeks ago and agreed to the demolition. City officials have not yet discussed whether they will purchase the land, Councilwoman Diane Boggs said.

"We are still stunned over how quickly the houses were removed," Boggs said. "We would like to buy those properties but we're just taking one step at a time."

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