HARTFORD – Demolition of an apartment building that was in danger of collapsing has begun.
A backhoe began tearing down a corner of the brick building at 26-28 Putnam St. shortly after 7:30 a.m. Bricks and a framed window tumbled to the ground.
The building was evacuated Thursday after people noticed that some of its outside walls bowed outward. Six families were forced to leave without most of their belongings.
“I grabbed my baby, grabbed my munchies and I was out,” said Carilyn Gonzalez.
City officials were concerned that the heavy rain may speed up the bulging building’s collapse.
“I came back and the building was falling apart,” resident Randolph Torres said. “Then they told us we couldn’t go back in there and we had to wait for further instructions.”
The demolition process is expected to take 8-10 hours, said Mike Fuschi, city building official.
He said the age of the building, which dates back to the late 1800s, and water helped weaken it.
The city is helping with the relocation of the six families, said Maribel La Luz, spokesperson for Mayor Pedro Segarra.
“We are doing everything possible to make sure that all individuals are out of harm’s way,” said La Luz.
By Christine Dempsey, Hartford Courant