Tuesday afternoon the city of Ardmore determined to demolish 12 houses at the first demolition hearing of the fiscal year. Community Development Director Jessica Scott discussed how the hearing went.
“We ended up having 16 properties on the demolition hearing, and we’re going to proceed with demolition on 12 of them,” Scott said. “The owners of the other four properties were given 90 days to either tear it down themself, get a new permit or sell them.”
Scott said that while some property owners did not show up to the meeting, most of those that did already had a plan in mind.
“90 percent of the people who showed up already had a plan, already knew what they were doing, and had already been in communication with the city,” Scott said. “Of course, we’ve already been working with them, so really this just finalized the details on paper.”
Scott said the city will now begin to put the homes out for bid for demolition and will likely do one home per week starting on Monday, Dec. 10. Each bid will be awarded one week after being placed. However, the factor that typically delays demolition is the disconnection of utility services.
“For example, with OG&E, they disconnect the electricity at the pole so there are not any problems, and ONG disconnects it at the street,” Scott said.
She added that the city has already sent the list to the utility companies, but the weather is typically the single largest factor in delays.
“If the weather gets bad and there are streetlights down or there is some other problem, we’re not going to be their first priority — and we shouldn’t be,” Scott said. “But once any problems like that gets taken care of, you’ll really start seeing those houses come down.”
“Most of these houses have been condemned for a long time,” Scott said. “It’s great that some are getting torn down, but it’s great that some of them are getting fixed too. Really either way is great as long as it’s not a vacant, falling-down house on the street.”
The next demolition hearing is scheduled for January 15 and has 25 homes currently on the list.