06/24/2013 10:49 am ET Updated Jun 24, 2013

Hotel Charlevoix Torn Down, Demolition Expert Talks Historic Building's Fall In Downtown Detroit

Chris McCarus, Michigan Now

This post originally appeared at Michigan Now, a public radio news series created by veteran reporter Chris McCarus.

INTRO: Another historic Detroit building is headed for a landfill. The Hotel Charlevoix came down this morning at 730am. Michigan Now’s Chris McCarus reports.

Ralph Sachs is a lawyer in Troy. He bought the Charlevoix 30 years ago and failed to fix it. The hotel was built more than 100 years ago. A Wayne County judge ordered Sachs to demolish it. The Charlevoix was is in a popular entertainment district behind the Fox Theatre. Art Dore operates from Bay City. He got the demolition contract. Dore spoke while his backhoes and bulldozers moved bricks and beams.

“That steel was made by Andrew Carnegie back in the day,” Dore said. “1904.”

“How do you know?” I said.

“His name is on it.”

“Doesn’t that seem sad though that this has to go that way?”

“Well it is but the building wasn’t maintained so it got dangerous and you have to do this. So everybody is happy. That’s what it’s all about.”

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