Emory Bryan, News On 6
TULSA, Oklahoma -- Tulsa County demolished an abandoned house Tuesday afternoon, eliminating what the neighborhood considered a huge blight.
The house was built of sandstone rock, surrounded by a solid steel fence, and left years ago to fall into ruin. Sometime along the line, it burned.
Don Comstock lives nearby. He remembers when the house was a showplace of the Sand Springs line.
"So it's sad been sad for everyone to see it deteriorate, and it's sad to see it grow over, but it's going to be hopeful to get it cleaned up," he said.
Comstock helped keep the branches trimmed back from the sidewalk for years and now believes demolishing the property will encourage other property owners nearby.
"When we do something like this, it's going to help people do a little bit more to their properties," he said.
Tulsa County rarely does property demolition, but was able to do it with a $46,000 federal grant.
The property was top of the list because it's central to the Ziegler Park neighborhood and so visible for people passing through.
"And this is about revitalizing the neighborhoods," Karen Keith, County Commissioner, said. "The county has neighborhoods, even though it's unincorporated, but it's a neighborhood and we have to pay better attention."
The property was so completely overgrown, it was hard to see the house before the demolition started. The hope for the neighbors is that getting rid of the old house will clear a barrier to improving this part of West Tulsa.
"We're really doing this for the neighborhood and hoping that revitalization comes out of that," Keith said.
Even though the house is on private property, it's being demolished at County expense. The County commissioners say it's worth it because it's been such a blight on the neighborhood for so long.