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Bangor hospital plans to demolish 100-year-old buildings

January 11, 2022 GMT

BANGOR, Maine (AP) — St. Joseph Hospital in Bangor is moving ahead with plans to demolish eight buildings that are more than 100 years old.

Four of the buildings near its main campus have already been knocked down, the Bangor Daily News reported Tuesday.

St. Joseph’s president, Mary Prybylo, told the newspaper that engineering reviews found the structures had significant risks and that the safest thing was to demolish them.

Seven of the properties were built in 1900 and one was built in 1910, according to city data, the newspaper reported. Bangor’s director of code enforcement, Jeff Wallace, said the city’s historic preservation rules do not apply to the buildings even though they are old.

Some nearby residents hope the hospital will reconsider the demolition.

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“Bangor has homes built of old-growth pine that doesn’t exist anymore, with slate from Monson with stones from local quarries,” Anne Dailey told the newspaper. “When those materials go into the dumpster, that’s layers of loss.”

Daily lives in Hampden and is an administrator of the Facebook group Saving Bangor’s Old Houses. She said the hospital owned by Massachusetts-based Covenant Health should at least salvage some of the buildings’ materials.

Prybylo did not say what, if any, plans the hospital has for the lots but told the newspaper it wanted to put in community vegetable gardens in the spring.