Tuesday, June 16, 2009

DEMOLITION STARTS FOR SAN BERNARDINO’S CRIME RIDDEN MERIDIAN APARTMENTS

Three of 18 of San Bernardino’s crime ridden Meridian Apartment fourplexes were demolished on Monday morning. Local residents are happy the apartments are leaving. Rikke Van Johnson, City of San Bernardino mayor pro tem and Sixth Ward council member, blames the high crime rate to a design flaw. “Those who lived there were not the problem people. It was those the area attracted.”



Left to right: Shannon Johnson and Carey Jenkins from The City of San Bernardino Redevelopment Agency smile as one of the crime ridden Meridian Apartments is demolished.

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(San Bernardino Calif.) Three of 18 of San Bernardino’s crime ridden Meridian Apartment fourplexes were demolished on Monday morning. Local residents are happy the apartments are leaving.

Rikke Van Johnson, City of San Bernardino mayor pro tem and Sixth Ward council member, blames the high crime rate to a design flaw. “Those who lived there were not the problem people. It was those the area attracted.”

The City of San Bernardino Redevelopment Agency has purchased 8 of the eighteen units and expects to close escrow on the remainder soon.

Johnson would like to see the fourplexs replaced with single-family homes. “Once we acquire all of the property, we’ll look for a developer to come in and bring about that type of housing.”

Renters are receiving relocation assistance from the city to find a new place to live. Rents for the substandard complex are $750 for two bedroom apartments and $850 for three bedroom units.

“I am happy to see these apartments go,” said local resident Carl Dameron. I am happy this city is ridding the Sixth Ward of these vacant complexes that have become a haven for criminals involved in drug sales, drug use and other felonies.”

Demolition started on Monday, June 15th, and clean up continues through June 16th and 17 th. “The remnants of the building won’t be put into landfills.

“Our subcontractor is sorting and recycling the old buildings. J & G Industries expects that 50 to 75 percent of the building can be recycled. The wood can become paper, or particleboard, the old tarpaper and shingles can become new shingles or asphalt and the old concrete can be sued to make new concrete,” said Johnson.

“Long before cities started to make recycling in the demolition business a requirement, our company has always strived to recycle and or reuse as much as possible from the buildings we demolish. Our company makes it an effort to recycle an estimated 75 percent of the buildings material,” said Eric Cain, J & G Industries project manager.

The recycling process saves materials filling up our landfills over the years that do not break down, thus protecting the environment and greatly reducing our costs as a company,” said Cain.

The primary materials being recycled include steel and other various metals. These metals provide the most return for the demolition business in terms of revenue. The metals are first loaded up in large high side steel trucks and then transported to metal recycling facilities. They are then processed and shipped out around the world for various uses.

Wood is another material that is often recycled. Many buildings are hand wrecked and the wood is reused for several purposes including new construction.

Charitable organizations also benefit from our recycling processes, Cain said. “In many cases organizations like Habitat for Humanity will come in and take anything from doors, cabinets, appliances, or other reusable belongings to further their projects. J & G will continue to recycle as much as possible and maintain its support for the environment.

Rikke Van Johnson represents the Sixth Ward on the San Bernardino City Council. He also serves as Mayor Pro Tem. Johnson retired after 27 years with the United States Postal Service. He is currently the manager for Greenwood Bail Bonds.

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