East Cleveland, Ohio, city officials are looking to an unconventional source for help demolishing a vacant high-rise apartment building: the entertainment industry. The Huron Place Apartments, a 254-unit affordable housing complex standing 13 stories, has been empty for years, but the city doesn’t have the funds to take down the blighted building.
With help from the Greater Cleveland Film Commission, the city is reaching out to film crews in hopes that an opportunity to implode the structure is an attractive one for a movie or TV project, Cleveland Scene reports.
Although unorthodox, outsourcing the opportunity to implode a structure to the entertainment industry isn’t unprecedented.
Ivan Schwarz, the Cleveland Film Commission's president and CEO, told Scene that the organization has reached out to film commissions and filmmakers around the world to try to spark interest in the project, citing building implosions used in movies like Lethal Weapon 4 and The Dark Knight as examples.
“This is really, really cool. Sure, there might be filmmakers who feel that this wouldn't be cost-effective, but maybe there's a filmmaker in Serbia who sees this as a perfect opportunity,” he said.
In March 2017, Ideastream reported that the Cleveland-based Thriving Communities Institute estimated the demolition costs to be around $1.9 million.
Schwarz told Scene that the cost of the demolition and affiliated services like abatement and cleanup would have to be worked out between the city and any interested parties prior to an agreement, but that the job would be done correctly.
“If someone decides to do this, it will be done right,” he said. “It will be a partnership with the city, and this won't happen unless it's a win-win.”