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Landmark King's Corner building bulldozed to make way for new apartments

Thursday, 29 June 2017

Landmark King's Corner building bulldozed to make way for new apartments thumbnailThe King's Corner building in Strabane which has been demolished to make way for new apartments.

ONE of Strabane's most recognisable buildings has been bulldozed to make way for new apartments.

The landmark King's Corner building, which has sat proudly at the junction of Ballycolman Lane and Bridge Street for generations, was tumbled on Wednesday night.

It comes almost two years after a housing association unveiled plans to transform the well-known residential building.

Habinteg Housing Association, supported by the Housing Executive, acquired the Bridgend building with the view to constructing six new apartments on the same site.

It is understood the development will provide four two-bedroom apartments and two one-bedroom apartments. The building project is expected to last for 12 months.

The scheme had necessitated the demolition of the building due to its poor condition however assurances have been given that it will be rebuilt and restored to its former architectural glory.

King's Corner - as it has been affectionately known for decades - was home to the well-known King family for many years.

However, since its dereliction it has fallen into a state of disrepair with pigeons also taking up residence.

Scores of local people gathered last week to watch and film proceedings as builders moved in to knock it down.

The flattening of the property however has caused mixed emotions for locals and created a stir on social media sites with many lamenting the loss of the historic building.

Many described it as an "end of an era" with some questioning why the building never attained 'listed' status.

Some were not so sad to see the building go with one man describing it as "an eyesore".

Others have welcomed the plans to provide some much needed social housing in the town amidst growing demand.

West Tyrone SDLP MLA., Daniel McCrossan, said that whilst he was sad to see the existing building gone, he welcomed the new plans.

"I've received confirmation from officials that Habinteg Housing Association will be building a number of social housing apartments at King's Corner.

"Apparently it was not feasible to restore the existing building so the decision was taken that the new building will be exactly the same as the old one - like for like," he said.

He added: "Disappointed the old building has been demolished but happy the new build will be a replica."

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