New Orleans fast-tracking demolition of Hard Rock hotel, will tear down surrounding buildings
NEW ORLEANS - After months of controversy and public outcry surrounding the crumbling Hard Rock hotel in downtown New Orleans, the city has issued an order mandating that it be torn down as early as next week.
According to WWL-TV, an order from the New Orleans Fire Department says three adjacent buildings must also be demolished before the hotel is ultimately taken down. Fire Chief Tim McConnell said equipment should be on-site within a week.
Chief's emergency declaration means no Historic District review of demolition of neighboring buildings, which include historic Alamo Theatre building. 3 buildings have 4 municipal addresses: 1019, 1025 and 1027 Canal St. and 1022 Iberville St. @WWLTV https://t.co/qt4IRpCXq6— David Hammer (@davidhammerWWL) May 5, 2020
McConnell could not give a precise timeline of when the buildings would come down but said the remains of two workers who were trapped inside should be removed from the rubble by July.
The hotel partially collapsed back in October, killing two workers who were on the site. More than half a year later, the bodies still have not been recovered due in large part to the unstable state of the building.
Mayor Latoya Cantrell faced stiff criticism earlier this year after a tarp fell from the facade of the building and partially revealed the body of one of those workers.
The city has since been engaged in a lengthy, publicized back-and-forth with the contractor responsible for the construction, going as far as detail the company's various failed attempts to arrange for the building's demolition.
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