Rebuilding project hasn’t been easy |

Rebuilding project hasn’t been easy

Sherburn Hinkley (left) and Billy Carothers Hinkley of Hinkley Masonry of Auburn work on a cinder block wall of the Elks Building project in Nevada City on Monday.
ALL | GrassValleyArchive

The reconstruction of Nevada City’s old Elks Building, destroyed in an early morning fire last March, should be completed in May, one owner said.

“It’s going to be nice,” Gary Tintle, one of the building’s four owners, said at the site Tuesday.

Tintle is also the general contractor for the Gold Rush-era structure at the corner of North Pine and Commercial streets. “We’ve just got to get it done,” he said, adding the neighbors have been great.

The 22,617 square-foot new brick building, estimated at $3 million, will replicate the old Elks Building, which accidentally burned in an early morning fire March 20. The building housed restaurant Friar Tuck’s, Off Broadstreet Theatre, county offices, the Herb Shop and other businesses.

It will be hard to tell the two apart, architect Bruce Boyd said Tuesday.

Tintle said Friar Tuck’s, the theater company and the Nevada County’s Probation Department are expected to move back into the building.

The goal is to bring every body back into the building, said Tintle, who has yet to hear from the Herb Shop.

Friar Tuck’s space will be 1,500 square feet bigger, he said. The theater space will be the same, while the space of the occupied by the Herb Shop will be tad smaller because a cellar has been eliminated.

The new building has sprinklers and fire-proof, steel frames rather than wood, Tintle said.

Construction has involved more than 200 truckloads of concrete, 230,000 pounds of structural steel, 110,000 pounds of steel reinforcement and more than 100 sleepless nights, he said.

This is a tough project, Tintle said.

A stream runs under the building and the piers for the foundation of the building had to be dug 45 feet deep into the bedrock, he said. Getting the underground utilities back into the building has been really difficult, he said.

There no room to maneuver or to store materials and the faster the construction, the more traffic disruptions, he said.

“But we’re not crybabies…we’re going to get it done.”

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