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ANOTHER BRICK FROM THE WALL: Bisbee deconstructs buildings affected by fire

Posted at 3:36 PM, Mar 22, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-22 18:36:46-04

BISBEE, Ariz. (KGUN) — On Monday, the City of Bisbee announced its plan to take down the second floors of the two buildings burned in last month's fire. The work began on Thursday afternoon and continued into Friday.

Earlier this week, the City of Bisbee said the bricks have to be removed one by one because of the instability of the walls. They said that it would be the fastest way to open Main Street back up, which locals, like Kristin Giehl, are excited about.

“We’re just looking forward to some access to traffic and pedestrian traffic so we’re happy to see the work crew get to work,” she said.

Six storefronts are still closed and blocked off from foot traffic, during the city’s busiest time of year.

“The whole community is really looking forward to the street getting opened," Giehl said. "It’s blocking the traffic for the locals to get up and down the canyon, and go to work and go about their lives.”

Annie Larkin, Executive Director of the Bisbee Mining & Historical Museum, says the historic buildings and architecture tell the city’s story.

“The architecture here demonstrated that the mining company had faith in the ore deposit and that we weren’t going to be a boom-bust mining camp,” she said.

Larkin says her family’s been in Bisbee since the 1800s, so she’s happy to see the care being taken to preserve history, one brick at a time.

“To see the care and the effort that’s being put forth to try and preserve her look, her history, i think that’s wonderful,“ Larkin said.

Bisbee Mayor Ken Budge says the front side walls, facing Main Street should be done by the end of the week, and then they will move to the walls in the back.

“Even if these structures are going to be rebuilt with modern materials hopefully those bricks can be on the facade to at lease provide the look, the historic look, that our Main Street is so known for,” Larkin said.

Alexis Ramanjulu is a reporter in Cochise County for KGUN 9. She began her journalism career reporting for the Herald/Review in Sierra Vista, which she also calls home. Share your story ideas with Alexis by emailing or by connecting on Facebook.