A building with a lot of history is slated to come down Saturday in Cedar Rapids — as another victim of the June flooding. Demolition crews plan to implode the Family Practice Center building at the Mercy Medical Center in Cedar Rapids at 8 o’clock. Hospital spokesperson Karen Vander Sanden says they determined it wasn’t economically feasible to renovate the building after the flooding.
Traditional demolition started in January and was taking a long time, so she says they decided to step up the process with the implosion that will take only seconds. Vander Sanden says they’re getting a lot of interest from people about the event. She says it’s the first implosion of a building in Cedar Rapids, which has generated a lot of excitement.
Vander Sanden says many others are sad to the structure go. It was originally the nursing school dorm when built in 1946 — with some 2,000 calling it home while going to school over 25 years.
Vander Sanden says people have a lot of great memories, so it is sad to see the building come down. But they are trying to honor the memory. Vander Sanden says they’re selling bricks the will fund a nursing scholarship, and are also raffling off the chance to push the implosion button. So far they’ve sold 300 tickets for the raffle and that money will also go to the scholarship.
Vander Sanden says spectators can watch the implosion live at the site, and they will also show it live on the Mercy website . Vander Sanden says the site of the building will become a parking lot for now and could eventually be an area for new expansion.