Agar Ave. house demolition and clean up lingers on. (Staff photo)

Remains of demolished Agar Ave. house still at location

City waiting for insurance company to reach a conclusion

The remnants of the house at 5107 Agar on the southside, first condemned, then heavily damaged in a fire and then demolished, remain at the location awaiting a final resolution.

It’s a saga that has gone on since early in the new year when the city ordered the house demolished after neighbours petitioned the city for an end to what had been a decline in the condition of the property.

An increasing amount of outside litter began to accumulate and troubles with tenants and disturbances required visits by the RCMP.

A complicating factor has been that the financial affairs of the property’s owner are now under the supervision of the provincial public trustee for individuals can no longer manage their own affairs. A company hired by the city did move heavy equipment to the location in August but then removed it pending final clearance to begin work.

After that happened and before final clearance was obtained, a late night fire Aug. 30 heavily damaged the structure and the company returned the next day to finally demolish what was left.

The remains were piled up but before they could be removed and the site tidied up, insurance adjusters arrived to complete a fire inspection.

That’s where the situation still stands, says city communications officer Tyler Clarke.

“We have been in communication with the public trustee office but communication with the insurance adjuster has stalled. We are currently waiting for information on when the cleanup can be completed and by whom,” said Clarke.

Still to be decided is who will pay for the demolition and clean up and what the final bill might be. A demolition permit taken out by Bear Creek Contracting, the company initially hired by the city, had a posted value $20,000.

Prior to the fire, Clarke said the city would pay for the demolition and clean up and then seek reimbursement, either by adding the cost to the annual property tax bill or having the cost deducted from the proceeds of a property sale.

But with an insurance company now involved, Clarke said there will be demolition cost discussions. When the insurance company will be finished isn’t known, Clarke continued, adding that a neighbour told the city asbestos was found but the city hasn’t been able to confirm that with the public trustee or insurance company.

“I don’t expect snowfall will stop the cleanup. When the investigation is finalized, and permission is provided to proceed, cleanup will commence.”

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