Feb. 24 – NEZPERCE – The Lewis County Fairgrounds building is scheduled for demolition after collapsing in early January under a heavy, wet snow load, Commission Chairman Greg Johnson said Tuesday.
“They hope to have it, by May 1, completely demolished and removed,” Johnson said. “About 60 per cent of the (floor area) was cement and the rest was dirt. They will have to remove that and they have found a place to dispose of it.”
The 80ft by 120ft metal building collapsed under a heavy snowfall on January 6. It was the fair’s main livestock building and housed show arenas and cattle pens. As recently as last year, all the old wooden pens for pigs, goats and sheep had been replaced with new metal and concrete pens. Johnson said all salvageable cattle pens will be retained for future use.
Andrew’s Demolition and Salvage, a local company, is the contractor responsible for the demolition. It should cost around $47,000.
Beyond wreckage removal, no other plans have been finalized, Johnson said. The county continues to work with the Idaho Counties Risk Management Program to determine the monetary value of replacing the building, and once that is done, the county will begin advertising for a builder.
“I’ve been told metal is very hard to come by right now,” Johnson said. “That’s why we need to reach out to contractors and push for this to be done as soon as possible.”
He said the county could expect to have a replacement building in September or October the earliest, which would likely mean that this year’s fair – which is traditionally held the last weekend in September – would have to find a place. other place.
“I’m really optimistic, but realistic,” Johnson said. “We may have to make other arrangements for the fair. The board of the fair have been meeting and asking the public’s opinion and trying to find out what works best for the children, the families and the 4-H and FFA community.
“So we’re at the mercy of the contractor. I’m very grateful that we have a contractor who can get in there and start.”
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