Former White Hall site could become housing atop offices

As crews work to demolish the burned-out White Hall, the next phase is getting under way for the corner of White Avenue and Sixth Street.

Associated Governments of Northwest Colorado recently awarded the city of Grand Junction a $5,000 matching grant to complete a planning document for the site.

The Grand Junction Downtown Development Authority wants to create some kind of project on the site to get the property’s next use on the tax rolls.

Harry Weiss, executive director of the DDA, said the grant will help pay for a feasibility study.

One idea for the property includes a housing development on top of office space. Weiss said he will first seek input from city councilors, most of whom are new to office.

“If there’s a new set of ideas or desired outcomes, we need to know that before we get too far down the road,” he said.

White Hall was gutted after a fire started early on the morning of Sept. 15, 2011, but its 10,000-square-foot eastern end was largely untouched. That portion of the building will not be torn down.

The city was deeded the property in May after the former owner, Rosemarie Glas, failed to follow through with plans to demolish it.

The city will turn the property over to the downtown authority after the cleanup process is completed.

Asbestos removal and demolition costs were expected to cost the city $313,650. The city already has received an $85,000 grant from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s Hazardous Materials and Waste Management Division to assist with those costs.

“We’ll keep beating the bushes to see if there’s more funds out there,” Weiss said.

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