Old Dairy Queen cleared for demolition

Posted Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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The old Dairy Queen in the Historic Stop Six: Sunrise Edition was approved unanimously for demolition Monday by the Historic and Cultural Landmarks Commission.

The Dairy Queen was originally scheduled to be demolished Sept. 26, but the demolition was delayed because city staff did not get approval from the historic commission before applying for a permit.

“If the singer Ray Charles was alive today, even he could see that building needs to come down. It is a monumental blight. Being able to bring it down is something the community is greatly looking forward to,” said Councilwoman Gyna Bivens.

Built in the 1970s as a Dairy Queen, the building has been vacant since the 1990s. The city took ownership of the structure in 2003 because of unpaid taxes.

The old building is a noncontributing structure to the historic district, said Liz Casso, historic preservation officer for the city. Now that the city has permission from the historic commission, Casso said, city officials can get the permit for the demolition immediately.

Bivens, however, said it will take time to re-coordinate the schedules of community businesses, churches, city officials and experts on development for a panel discussion for the demolition event. Even high school students in the area interested in economic development have recommendations of what to do with the area, Bivens said.

She hopes the demolition will take place by the end of October or first week of November.

Regina Blair, president of the Stop Six Sunrise Edition, spoke in favor of the demolition at the meeting. She said tearing down the old Dairy Queen will be a call for new development in east Fort Worth.

Approval is a good start, Blair said, but it is not enough.

“It will be ‘better best’ once it is actually demolished and there is a dialogue between our council representative, the neighborhood, the community and developers. Then I will really, really feel confident there will be movement for that major node in our community,” Blair said.

Caty Hirst, 817-390-7984 Twitter, @CatyHirst

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