Early Tuesday morning, construction workers began dismantling the Cullars house, a 126-year-old home on South College Street.
Workers in respiratory masks and reflective vests pulled boards and bricks from the remnants of the house while a large excavator rolled on top of the site.
According to Campbell Holmes, freshman at Southern Union State Community College and a resident of a neighboring apartment building, crews arrived at the house at about 6 a.m.
“They were out here tearing some of the trees out, and I thought they were just doing some landscaping,” Holmes said. “Then this Cat [construction vehicle] pulls off of a trailer, and they just start tearing the building down.”
The Cullars house and its impending deconstruction were the subject of lengthy City Council debates last fall.
Last June, Orange Development LLC, the owners of the house since 2017, sent a notice to the occupants of the building that their lease would end in October 2019 and the building would then be demolished.
In the months leading up to that deadline, Auburn City Council members said they received dozens of emails, calls and letters about the fate of the Cullars house. In response they held forums with community members and voters offered ways that the City could either purchase or relocate the historic home.
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Debate on the issue centered on the estimated $1 million cost to relocate and restore the house.
In a 6 to 2 vote on Sept. 19, the Council voted not to allocate public funds to the relocation or restoration of the house.
It is not currently known what developers intend for the site.
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