City to demolish Berry Clinic

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According to City Attorney Marcus Noles, the city will immediately begin the process to demolish the unstable skeleton of a building bearing the Berry Clinic name that burned earlier this year. During the Monday night city council meeting, Noles said the city asked the owner, Ken Berry for a letter from a certified engineer advising on the stability of the brick shell where the former doctor’s office at 30 E. Main St. in downtown Camden. Noles said Berry instead sent a letter from a contractor. That letter, said Noles, is invalid.

Codes Enforcer Mike Townsend confirmed the building remains a hazard and was the owner’s responsibility to make it safe for the city. Noles informed a lawsuit could ensue, but it would be less money for the city to demolish than court proceedings.

Camden Mayor Roger Pafford agreed. “We will have hundreds of children on the court square in a couple of weeks for the Halloween event. We need to ensure our citizens are safe. Right now, that would not be the case.”

The council agreed unanimously to proceed with condemning the building and take the necessary steps to demolish it.

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