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2 Vacant Buildings to Be Razed : Redevelopment: Agency approves a $125,500 contract to clear the path for downtown projects.

August 26, 1993|TOMMY LI | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

GLENDALE — The Glendale Redevelopment Agency unanimously decided to demolish a two-story apartment building and a former carpet store to make way for future downtown projects.

No one from the community opposed the proposal during Tuesday's meeting of the redevelopment agency, composed of all five members of the Glendale City Council. Councilwoman Eileen Givens was absent.

Agency members also approved a $125,500 contract with BMW Environmental Services Corp. of Glendale to knock down the two buildings and remove asbestos from the apartment complex.

"They're both substandard (in appearance)," said City Manager David H. Ramsay. "We believe they could be potentially attractive nuisances and so we wanted to get rid of them."

The city paid $800,000 last year for the four-unit apartment building at 221-223 S. Orange St. Its previous owners were Harold and Marjorie Knuckles, who have since moved out of state, said Bob Kadlec, a project manager for the redevelopment agency.

Nearby business owners have complained about the complex's run-down appearance and transients who break into and live in vacant apartment units, Kadlec said.

The 3,675-square-foot property and a 660-square-foot garage are in the area designated as a future Glendale Galleria expansion project. No specific designs have been drawn because of the slow economy.

One tenant remains in an apartment, so the demolition will be delayed until at least November, Kadlec said. The tenant was given a 90-day eviction notice last month and is expected to be relocated by the redevelopment agency.

It will cost $97,000 to remove asbestos from the complex and then tear it down. As part of an agreement in the escrow, that amount will be covered by $120,000 the Knuckles family had paid. The difference will then be returned to the Knuckles, Kadlec said.

For the former Edwards Carpet building at 120 S. Maryland Ave., Kadlec said demolition could begin in a month. BMW Environmental contractors estimate it will cost $22,000 to tear that building down and $6,500 to fence the two buildings.

Redevelopment agency officials bought the vacant building earlier this year for $600,090. It stands in the way of a future 900- to 1,100-space parking structure--part of a new shopping center tentatively called Glendale Marketplace, Kadlec said.

No specific time line is available on when that project will begin.

In an unrelated action, Glendale City Council members on Tuesday agreed to scale back the Brand Boulevard street renovation project, between Wilson and California avenues, because contract bids ranging from $637,129 to $888,888 were much higher than the city's estimate of $511,186.

The project is the first phase in revamping Brand Boulevard between Colorado and Doran streets. A total of 49 ficus trees and some benches are slated for removal on sidewalks to make room for buses to pull out of traffic lanes during their stops.

City officials will now seek new contract offers to improve only both sides of Brand Boulevard in front of the Alex Theater and 50 feet north and south of its entrance.

Council members were told that construction should be completed by mid-November, more than a month before the theater's New Year's Eve opening.

"The opening of the Alex Theater is simply a top priority of the city," City Manager Ramsay said. "An important part of the overall Alex appearance is the street in front of it, and we want that to complement the theater itself."

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