Alabaster OKs demolition of houses along U.S. 31

The Alabaster City Council recently approved the demolition of several dilapidated houses in the city, including this one at 731 First Street South. (Contributed)

The Alabaster City Council recently approved the demolition of several dilapidated houses in the city, including this one at 731 First Street South. (Contributed)

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

ALABASTER – Crews soon will work to tear down dilapidated houses on four properties – three of which are along U.S. 31 – after the City Council voted to move forward with the demolitions during a Feb. 23 meeting.

The council voted unanimously to demolish houses at 410 Fifth Avenue S.E., 267 First Street South, 701 First Street South and 731 First Street South. First Street South is also known as U.S. 31, which is a major roadway stretching through the city.

Fifth Avenue Southeast is off Shelby County 11 in the Simmsville community, 731 First Street South and 701 First Street South are near the intersection of U.S. 31 and Seventh Avenue Southeast and 267 First Street South is near the old Alabaster City Hall building off U.S. 31.

All four properties contain long-abandoned, overgrown residences, said Alabaster City Manager George Henry.

The Fifth Avenue Southeast property contains an abandoned mobile home, 267 First Street South contains a dilapidated house being consumed by overgrowth and the majority of the structure at 701 First Street South is covered by years of vegetation growth.

The house at 731 First Street South has a partially caved-in roof, unsecured windows and disused Christmas lights hanging from the roof.

The Alabaster Housing and Abatement Board previously recommended the City Council approve the four homes’ demolition.

“I’d like to thank the Abatement Board for bringing this to us,” said Ward 1 Councilwoman Sophie Martin, whose ward contains all four properties. “This is a definite sign that progress is continuing in Ward 1. We are very proud of the growth and enhancement of this area.

“Even though these are coming down, we are excited about the opportunities ahead,” Martin said.