TEXARKANA, TX (KSLA) - Vehicle and foot traffic in downtown Texarkana, Texas, will be redirected over the next few weeks to allow for the demolition of a historic building.
Workers have begun blocking off Broad Street in preparation for demolishing the Kress Building.
"The building has structural issues, so we need to get it down," city spokeswoman Lisa Thompson said.
Over the past 20 years, she said, the structure has become a resting place for birds and a possible health hazard for people who work in the area.
"There have been some environmental issues with the building, lots of gross contaminate found inside. So we want to make sure we get it down quickly and safely for everyone."
The city is aware of the Kress Building's historic value and will try to preserve as much of the structure as possible, Thompson added.
In addition to the changes in traffic flow, the demolition means some downtown Texarkana business owners must relocate.
"We have been displaced from our location at 114 W. broad St.," said attorney Jason Horton, whose building is next to the Kress building.
But he is not upset over the temporary move.
"I am very thankful the City of Texarkana, Texas, has offered and the City Council has approved the budget to demolish this building."
Officials say it will take four months to take down the building.
The city has budgeted $400,000 for the project.
"My goal once it is completed, assuming my building is still standing, is to move back downtown if it's feasible," Horton said.
Samuel Kress founded S.H. Kress & Co. in 1896. The company had more than 250 five-and-dime stores in 29 states.
The buildings' designs ranged from elaborate Gothic Revival to streamlined Art Deco, according to the National Building Museum.