Damon Howell / Photo
The city has roped off the sidewalk around this vacant Main Street business until a safe solution can be found for falling bricks.
Chicken Little may think the sky is falling near 57 South Main Street, but according to Jasper officials falling bricks are the real threat.
The potential danger of more loose bricks has forced the closure of a portion of sidewalk and parking spots near Spring and Main streets.
Jasper’s Development Manager Lonnie Waters said that last Friday, August 7, a few bricks and some mortar dislodged from a building’s facade and fell onto the sidewalk. The builiding is not occupied now, previously housing Main Street Fitness. Waters said he was unsure if anyone witnessed the falling bricks, but they were found on the ground and reported to city hall.
“As a precaution the city has roped off the area to avoid anyone getting hurt,” Waters said. “I’ve been in discussion with the property owner and they were supposed to have some people come out Saturday to look at it. Right now we are waiting to hear back.”
The sidewalk will remain closed until a solution can be reached. “The city is looking at it from a safety issue, and we want to be sure to protect the public,” he said.
Tadd Schreiber, who owns the adjacent 61 Main restaurant with his wife Jenna, said he recognizes the hazard falling bricks pose, but hopes that with all the good things going on in downtown, it can be addressed quickly.
“It’s hard enough to run a business right now,” Schreiber said. “This is taking away two parking spots, including one handicapped spot and the ramp [to access the sidewalk]. I understand the safety aspect, but it would be a shame to just let it sit there.”
According to county tax records, the building is owned by local attorney George Weaver. It was constructed in 1924 and is 4,200 sq. ft.