Michigan city unhappy with demolition delays

Low scrap prices pointed to as disincentive for contractor to finish grain elevator dismantling.

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December 10, 2015

Lower metals prices may be one reason why the demolition of a grain elevator complex in Carson City, Michigan, is taking longer than expected.

According to an online report by the Greenville, Michigan-based Daily News, portions of the former Kellogg Elevator Company complex remain standing even though the city council of Carson City hired a demolition contractor in late 2013.

The report says council members and area residents “grew concerned” starting in the spring of 2014, when dismantling and demolition work being performed by PresCon Industries Inc., Rockford, Michigan, seemed late in getting started.

According to the Daily News, the contractor removed the grain silos from the property later in 2014, but “over the past year, council members again say they have witnessed little work being performed [and] all three grain elevator buildings remain.”

Carson City Mayor Bruce Tasker is quoted as saying he suspects the falling price of ferrous scrap may be playing a hand in the delay. “Last year [in 2014] they did a nice job [and] took down all of the (silos) so they could sell the steel, as steel prices were up,” Tasker told the Daily News. “Well, now steel prices are down.”

Reached separately, Richard Garlick of PresCon denied that metals prices were involved and said his schedule has been overbooked, saying that PresCon and a partner contractor have some 30 demolition or restoration jobs on the books.

Garlick also indicated the partner contractor, Barn Cats Restoration, also based in Rockford, wants to reclaim lumber and timbers from the Kellogg Elevator site.

“This lumber is pretty good in these buildings,” Garlick told the Daily News. “They [Barn Cats Restoration] will take it apart and save it so they can use it later to restore other barns.”