The Dunwoody City Council discussed on Jan. 12 moving forward with demolition of a more than 50-year-old dormitory building at Brook Run Park.
Parks Manager Brent Walker said the low bid came in at $72,000 and city staff wants $100,000 to cover the bid plus additional possible costs associated with asbestos cleanup.
Though Councilman Denny Shortal expressed interest in boarding up the building, and possibly using the kitchen or other rooms for office space, other members of the council said the building is worthless.
Councilman Terry Nall said he learned of the dilapidated dormitory during rides with police officers. “This building is too unsafe to be left standing,” he said. “It’s a death trap.”
With the construction of the Treetop Quest zip-line obstacle course in progress, and due open in March, Nall said the structure is an eyesore. Evidence of people using the building existed as well.
Describing torn apart ceilings with wires hanging down, Nall said to Shortal that “There’s no kitchen anymore. [The building’s] not at all useable in any way, shape or form.”
The potential rodent problem arising from the ruins after demolition gave Councilman John Heneghan the most concern. “When the walls come down, rodents scurry,” he said. He wanted to make sure city staff had a plan for dealing with rodents and pests before demolition started.
Councilman Doug Thompson said no one has used the dormitory since the 1996 Olympics. “I’ve always been for tearing this down,” he said, because walking past the structure in a boarded-up condition is not in line with the vision of Dunwoody that he has.
Demolishing the dormitory would make that area of Brook Run Park look much nicer, he said. Councilman Jim Riticher agreed, adding that any plans to adapt the building likely wouldn’t fit current codes and would require a complete new set of plans to use what was a dormitory as an office or meeting space.
“I don’t think there’s any hope for this place,” Riticher said.