The owners of the old Safeway building in downtown Roseburg are looking to remove asbestos and are seeking estimates to demolish the building, according to Roseburg Community Development Director Stuart Cowie.
The owners filed for a demolition land use permit with the city’s planning department in October after four months of being fined by the city for being a derelict building. A previous demolition permit was issued in 2009 but expired after six months of inaction.
The current permit is still good for almost four months and the owners are taking steps to act on the demolition. At the Douglas County Solid Waste Advisory Committee meeting last Wednesday, County Commissioner Chris Boice said the county approved a fee waiver for the disposal of the building because it will help eliminate an eyesore.
“We are interested in trying to help and do what’s right as far as the best interest of the public,” Boice said.
County Public Works Director Scott Adams was unavailable for comment, but Boice said the department is working on a legal contract with the owners of the old Safeway and neighboring abandoned Rite-Aid building. He said the owners proposed paying for the demolition waste of one building and the county would waive the fee for the other.
“The idea is that we’re actually saving space in the landfill,” Boice said. “The reality of it is, they could demolish that building, take the entire amount up to the landfill, pay the fee and dump it in. By helping them with the waiver on part of that material, it actually forces them to find alternative dump sites for things like scrap metal and concrete and other materials that are recyclable.”
The building, which was built in 1963 is currently owned by Mary DeRose and Pat Cedoline and has a real market value of $383,983, according to the Douglas County Assessor’s Office.
Ideas to replace the old grocery store have ranged from a new grocery store to a boutique hotel.
The old Safeway building is one of 30 buildings in Roseburg that are being fined for being derelict, which the city defines as unoccupied and boarded or unoccupied and unsecured.
The Roseburg City Council created the ordinance in December 2017 with the intent of improving the look of the city by making sure buildings appeared habitable. Under the ordinance, the city can register buildings considered derelict for the owners.