Purchase photos

Opera House to be razed this week


By The Hays Daily News

By The Hays Daily News

Demolition of the historic Opera House at 811 Fort will commence Monday.

Midland Wrecking Inc. will start mobilization and set up traffic control, closing the west leg of the intersection of Ninth and Fort. Traffic on Fort Street will be reduced to one lane, according the Jesse Rohr, city of Hays planning, inspection and enforcement superintendent.

The garage on the south side of the building, adjacent to the alley between Eighth and Ninth streets, will be removed prior to the main structure.

Crews primarily will work on the south and west sides of the Opera House during the demolition process, and anticipate having the entire building on the ground within two to three days.

Following demolition, wood and miscellaneous debris will be hauled to the Ellis County landfill. Stone and concrete will go to a separate private site for salvage.

Midland Wrecking has indicated it will work with adjacent business owners throughout the process, which is anticipated to take approximately two weeks.

Once the building is removed, the plan is for the site to be graded and seeded.

The Opera House, or Krueger Building, was built in the 1870s and is owned by Liberty Group, which has developed and restored many of the buildings in downtown Hays.

Stones have fallen from the building during the past few months, prompting the city of Hays to move forward with the condemnation process it had initiated in March. Liberty Group then contracted with Midland Wrecking to perform the demolition.