Demolition set for Georgetown Common Apartments

By Katherine Tellez

May 15, 2014 Updated May 15, 2014 at 10:38 PM CDT

WASHINGTON, Ill. -- The city of Washington is taking a big step in its goal of cleaning up 100 percent of the almost $90 million in damage left by the November tornado.

City administrator Tim Gleason announced demolition of the Georgetown Common apartments will begin on Monday.

He said this area was a big concern of the city's because of the large amount of debris in a small area.

While residents are glad to finally see it cleared up -- they do have some concerns.

"Right now all the critters are content because they aren't being disturbed. But once the contractor comes in and starts tearing down they won't have a place to call home," said Washington resident Cindy Shaver. "So we're afraid they're going to come up over the hill and invade our neighborhood."

City officials said they will be speaking with the contractor about that issue before demolition begins.

And that's not the only progress the city has made.

More than 600 permits have been issued -- about half of the number of homes damaged or destroyed in the tornado.

But Gleason said there are about 250 residents the city has not heard from; and about 24 of those properties look like they haven't been touched at all.

He said the city will intervene if they don't hear from the property owners soon.

"Even if the permit is not pulled, the resident signaling what their plans are -- realizing that could change -- that's what I want to know along with providing a safe property," Gleason said.

Mayor Gary Manier did say some good news regarding state funding is coming within the week.

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