Demolition Starts on Flood-Damaged Riverfront Homes
Crews will tear down more than 30 homes
Crews will tear down more than 30 homes Video by kmtv.comvideo
Council Bluffs, IA - A bulldozer cleared piles of cement Thursday,after crews demolished flood-damaged homes near Gifford Road.
Helen Coats fought back tears as she thought about her family home getting torn down. "I can't go down and watch, you can't imagine what it looked like before so I don't want to see," she said.
City officials received a grant from FEMA for the demolition and plan to purchase the land from the homeowners. Homeowners don't know yet how much they will be paid for their properties, some of the homes had not been appraised for more than twenty years.
So what's next for the riverfront? City spokesman Steve Carmichael says the Gifford Park neighborhood will never be the same, "It will probably be allowed to go back to virgin ground, or maybe the master plan we'll have a park that would go in that area. Something that will be minimal in nature in the floodway. No more buildings".
Although Coats will never be able to rebuild, she'll hold on to the memories as she closes this chapter of her life. "I just want to get on with my life, everyone else does too."
Demolition crews will tear down more than 30 houses. City workers say it could take anywhere from two weeks to a month to complete the project.