FORT SCOTT, KS – Businesses have been forced to adapt, due to a recent roof collapse in Fort Scott.
It happened at the Eagle Block Building.
The city had acquired the building only a couple months ago, with hopes of restoring it.
Unfortunately, due to recent rain, the building’s roof gave in, forcing many to leave for the time being.
“My bartender and I were setting up to open up Sharkey’s and we heard a crash.” Says David Lipe, Sharkey’s Pub & Grub Owner.
That was last Tuesday, after heavy downpours were finally too much for the Eagle Block Building in downtown Fort Scott.
“Friday morning I noticed the water all over the floor, that’s the only reason we knew anything was going on, and they got to investigating and they found the hole in the roof where that wall had fallen in off the building beside us.” Says Josh Weber, CDL Fort Scott Nevada Manager.
With structural integrity in question, those occupying the building were forced to evacuate.
“We moved everything off and we’re not going back. Impact wise it didn’t really affect us because we got everything out and into other locations.” Says Weber.
While CDL was able to escape with minimal impact, it hasn’t been the same for the Sharkey’s Pub and Grub.
“Unfortunately in this business, a lot of my employees are paycheck to paycheck. We’re displacing those 27 employees and that’s the biggest worry for me is what they’re going to do, who am I going to get back, they got to take care of their business which I understand. Luckily I got some other places where I can place them but it’s not going to work for everybody.” Says Lipe.
The building is under the city’s control through its land bank program.
With constant meetings over the past week, it hopes to help businesses return.
“The two middle buildings being the problem, we have to remove those to save the northernmost and the southernmost, the bookend buildings if you will. We’re working very hard to make sure those buildings and those businesses can still thrive and succeed, but we can’t do that until we make sure that it’s safe for the community and safe for those business owners to return.” Says Jeremy Frazier, Fort Scott City Manager.
The city just held their third meeting in three days and have officially signed a contract for demolition.
We could see this happen by the end of the week, and businesses potentially return within a month.