Demolition of ‘Kirkwood Building’ leaves community sad


NEGAUNEE, Mich. (WJMN) –  The demolition of a downtown Negaunee landmark has begun.

To many, the Kirkwood building in downtown Negaunee is more than 4 walls and a door.

Mark Balzarini, Negaunee resident says, ” I hate to see it go because there’s a lot of childhood memories here. I’ve been living here almost 60 years.”

People like Mark Balzarini say watching the building crumble is like losing a piece of history.

” It’s gonna be missed the towns gonna look different without it, ” continues Balzarini.

A building that has stood on Iron Street for more than a century is being torn down.

City Manager Nate Heffron says people tell them they are sad and disappointed.

” I think a lot people see it as a piece of history for the city of Negaunee specifically being one of the largest and most unique buildings built on Iron Street, ” says Nate Heffron, City Manager of Negaunee.

The ‘Kirkwood Building’ has been home to bars, restaurants, even a hardware store. But it was deemed a hazard to the community after a portion of the roof caved in.

” A lot of people are obviously upset that this building is coming down but do understand why it needs to come down, it’s a matter of public safety, health, and welfare, ” continues Heffron.

The city tells me they notified the building owner earlier this summer of the demolition, and that the owner has not taken steps towards fixing the building.

” The city can just not afford to wait for the building to collapse any further, damaging adjacent buildings or also putting the lives or other property in risk of a final collapse, ” says Heffron.

For four walls and a door, this building has held so much history. While, the future of the property is unclear, the city tells me it will not be a parking lot.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Latest News Video

Precious Metals 10-15-2019

Thumbnail for the video titled "Precious Metals 10-15-2019"

Stocks 10-15-2019

Thumbnail for the video titled "Stocks 10-15-2019"


Thumbnail for the video titled "LOCAL 3 TUESDAY EVENING WEATHER FORECAST 10/15/2019"

Caring House Renovations

Thumbnail for the video titled "Caring House Renovations"

Chronic Wasting Disease

Thumbnail for the video titled "Chronic Wasting Disease"

NMU Career Fair

Thumbnail for the video titled "NMU Career Fair"