Downtown demolition begins with Cramer building |

Downtown demolition begins with Cramer building

Bright and early Monday morning, demolition crews revved up the backhoe and began destroying the Cramer building in downtown Grass Valley.

The huge machine took bites out of the concrete walls, exposing the wooden beams, flooring, and shelving within.

Down went the former Greyhound bus station, the attorney’s office and the hair salon where a Holiday Inn Express and conference center will eventually stand.

The crashing and crunching attracted attention from passers-by, who took a few minutes from their Mondays to watch the crews destroy the building.

Unlike the others, Jim Kistle was there for the long haul.

“I got nothing better to do today than watch them destroy this place,” Kistle said. The longtime Nevada County resident perched on the Wolf Creek bridge, observing quietly.

Kistle recalled waiting for a bus bound for Oakland after he was drafted in the building and bowling in the Gold Bowl.

On Monday, the four-man crew reduced the building to mere piles of concrete, wood, and metal.

The concrete and wood will be recycled, said Greg Rogers, a manager with M.P. Allen General Contractors.

Hazardous materials, including flooring containing asbestos, was taken out before the demolition. Water is being applied to keep the dust down and the air quality is being monitored and tested daily, Rogers said.

The demolition is expected to take three to four weeks, Rogers said.

The Cramer building, GRA-NEVA appliance store, the Gold Bowl, and the City Center Playhouse are being taken down to make way for a Holiday Inn Express and conference center.

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