BRADENTON -- City officials are planning to demolish two homes as part of an ongoing effort to redevelop the Wares Creek neighborhood.
The two homes on Ninth Avenue West have been abandoned and boarded up for at least two years. They are part of eight parcels the city purchased in November 2012 for more than $290,000, with the intent of demolishing or rehabilitating the homes there. The city hopes to build single-family homes or possibly create a park with public access to the creek.
"Single-family homes are currently in the process of being evaluated," City Clerk and Treasurer Carl Callahan said during a City Council work session Wednesday. "We know they are bad and should be probably be torn down."
Concerns were expressed, however, as to what could be built on the lots if the homes are torn down since many of them are in a flood zone.
"From a neighborhood standpoint you would want single-family homes," Calla
han told the council.
Councilman Patrick Roff is optimistic about the redevelopment of the lots, which are located in his ward.
"That will make a big difference in the area," Roff said.
"I'd like to see that we will use these waterfront properties to have public access," Roff said.
While no decisions have been formalized, a public park giving residents access to the newly dredged creek is a possibility.
No schedule has been set for when they houses might be taken down. The city has up to $20,000 in impact fees available to pay for the demolitions.
Elsewhere in Wares Creek, the $51.8 million Cedar Hammock-Wares Creek flood control project continues to move forward.
Although delayed in January due to an appeal, the bid to build the retention wall along the creek from 21st to 30th Street West has been awarded to Miami-based contractor PAC COMM INC., according to U.S. Army Corps of Engineers spokeswoman Amanda Ellison.
This part of the project had been tentatively scheduled to begin construction in February but has been pushed back to April at the earliest.
The flood control project is designed to reduce the flooding in the Wares Creek neighborhood.