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Demolition crews tear down landslide-ridden NSL homes

By Mike Anderson | Posted - Aug. 1, 2011 at 5:11 p.m.

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NORTH SALT LAKE -- Demolition crews are tearing down two homes in the Springhill subdivision after the homes were condemned.

Over the past few years, homes in the Springhill subdivision have been condemned because the area the homes were built has started sliding down the mountainside, causing foundations to break and homes to become uninhabitable.

As crews began tearing down the homes around 10 a.m. Monday, some neighbors watched and were reminded of the slow-moving landslides that have affected several of the subdivision's homes.

Nearby neighbor Corri Petersen said she couldn't help but watch the homes demolished. She grew up here and still lives down the street

"I have memories from junior high and high school up here," Petersen said. "It's kind of sad to see them come down, one-by-one,"

The landslide has pushed the floor up. You can't even walk around inside that house; it's unstable.

–Karl Christensen

The two homes were recently condemned by the city of North Salt Lake after residents reported slow-moving landslides in the area.

"I was just thinking of the people I knew who lived in these houses," Petersen said. "It's just sad to see it all go downhill."

Contractors say removing all the debris from the neighborhood landslide will take some slow, careful work.

"The landslide has pushed the floor up," said contractor Karl Christensen. "You can't even walk around inside that house; it's unstable."

A few blocks away, surveyors with the Utah Geological Survey are attempting to determine how many homes have been affected. Once the area is accurately mapped out, city manager Barry Edwards said North Salt Lake will be able to ask the federal government for help.

"If we're successful with the federal government, then there will be funds to be able to help them," Edwards said. "Short of that, I'm not sure there's much the city can do, other than what we've already been doing.

Several nearby homes are also cracked and damaged by the creeping landslide, but the city has deemed the properties safe for now. Homeowners like Corri Petersen say they have no choice but to stick it out.

"Yeah I do worry," she said, "especially these two houses that have been taken down. It looks like it could come right down to my house. So I do worry."

The demolition crew says they will work on the first house Monday and hopefully move over to the second house, which is just a few blocks down the street, on Tuesday.

In the meantime, a small community effort continues as people in the neighborhood try to raise money for the dozens of homeowners who now live in homes that are virtually unsellable.



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