Sikeston Buildings

Sikeston Buildings
By:  CJ Cassidy

Sikeston, MO -- City leaders in Sikeston have some big plans this summer.  They want to clean up their streets by tearing down eyesores around the city.  It's a project that's been in the works for going on two years now.

City leaders plan on opening up bids for demolition contractors next week, and the buildings should come down soon afterwards.
The mayor tells me the ten buildings scheduled to be demolished were declared health and safety hazards, and that's why it's all happening so quickly.
"Our goal is to get a large enough area to redevelop people want to come in build single family homes," Michael Bohannon with the Land Development and Reconstruction Authority says.
City leaders say that'll happen once these eyesores around the city come tumbling down.
Still, Mayor Mike Marshall says they weren't able to reach most property owners to ask them to clean up their act, so the buildings had to be declared hazards first.
"Some of these houses are burned out, and they're open so kids can get in there get cut on glass walls can fall down health hazard it's dangerous had instances where people have hidden drugs or weapons n these abandoned houses we want to get rid of them," the mayor says.
Bohannon says folks in the City of Flags can finally see money from last year's sales tax put to good use and keep their flags flying high.
"If the property owner wants to pay the cost of demolition to reclaim property that's great, but he has to maintain it if he doesn't due process in court we'll take ownership of it," he explains.
Most Sikeston residents we talked to say, that seems fair enough.
The cost of bringing down each house would cost between $4000 and $ 5000 so owners would have to pay that to the city before they can re-claim their property.
City leaders say in the long run they have about 100 properties they want to clean up.