Washington Street building in High Point on the verge of collapse

HIGH POINT, N.C. — Another building along historic Washington Street could collapse due to structural issues.

A building at 736 Washington St. has been used for various commercial businesses over the years.

City Spokesman Jeron Hollis said the planning department and city became aware of the structural issues last week when the building’s third floor collapsed to the second. The condemned notice on the front door of the building dates July 15, 2015.

“We’re not aware of any debris falling from the building but we want to be safe and one of the other things that we’ve decided to do is close the park [beside of the building],” Hollis said. “We’re going to be working with the property owner; there will be a hearing on Monday where the city determines if we will have repairs to the building, demolition of the building — and we hope to get this resolved as soon as possible.”

Hollis said the city is considering a partial street blocking around the building for the safety of pedestrians and drivers. There will, however, be detours so that customers can reach nearby businesses.

Full Gospel Church of Jesus Christ, next door to the building, has moved its 1st and 3rd Sunday services to the Morehead Recreational Center as a safety precaution.

High Point is already in the middle of a revitalization project for Washington Street, adding lamp posts, paving streets and sidewalks.

“We’re actually ahead of schedule with the revitalization project that we’ve been working on, but at this point that could hold us up for several weeks,” Hollis admitted.

Creative Reupholstering business owner James Thompson works across the street from the building in question.

Thompson moved to High Point in 1942 and remembers when Washington Street thrived with black-owned businesses in the segregation era.

“I’d love to see them restore it. It’s an old historical building and you know all of our historical buildings are getting away,” Thompson said.

He hopes the city will decide to repair the building to restore the street to its glory.

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