The City of Knox will be hiring a structural engineer to evaluate the condition of a downtown structure.
Knox Building Administrator Kenny Pfost previously told the Board of Works members that the roof collapsed inside the building that formerly housed the Independent Bikers Association at 8 S. Main Street. Damage can be seen throughout the building where the upstairs ceiling is gone with water damage on the first floor.
Pfost said that a letter was sent to the owners of the building requesting they hire an engineer to determine the need to rehabilitate or demolish the structure, but they indicated that they are unable to afford that step in the process. The owners have not sent a written letter requesting a public hearing on the matter.
If it needs to be demolished, the building may qualify for a Blight Elimination grant. Grant money could be obtained for rehabilitation, but Mayor Dennis Estok warned there are a lot of qualifications a building must meet in order to qualify for those funds.
Estok said a structural engineer has to be hired and it can be done at the expense of the city, but that expense will be assessed to the property owners in the form of administrative costs for failure to follow the order to do so. A public hearing will then be set to hear comments on the fines. The board members unanimously approved a motion to that effect.