News Flash

City of Cleburne News

Posted on: August 19, 2020

Cleburne demolishes abandoned Earl Williams grocery store paving way for redevelopment

Earl Williams grocery store


The City of Cleburne is performing a specialized demolition of a grocery store, which has stood abandoned for more than four decades.

Contractors have begun the demolition of the building at 614 N. Brazos. The city designated the structure for demolition because of its deteriorated condition and safety concerns.

It has been a long road to ensure the safe removal of this building,” Mayor Scott Cain said. “This is just one step in the continued effort to create a better Cleburne that includes this and other projects that are improving the surrounding neighborhoods.”

The City has targeted the building’s demolition to remove substandard and dangerous structures for several years. This aligns with City Council’s goal of advancing community and economic health. The process to execute this project included condemning the structure, acquiring the property, and working with state and federal regulators to ensure a safe demolition.

Due to asbestos found in the building, the work requires a specialized demolition. City staff is working with the contractor to ensure the demolition follows all state and federal guidelines for taking down the structure and removing materials and debris.

The building was original built in the early 1960s and closed in the early ’80s, according to local historians.

“It was the premier grocery store and people came from all over Cleburne to shop there,” Councilman John Warren said.

Since its closure, the community has boarded up the building through several volunteer efforts with vandals occasionally removing the boards to enter the building.

“I am glad to see it being raised at this time because the property has the potential for other things,” Councilman Warren said.

Once the rubble is removed and the area cleaned, the city is reinvesting in the land for future residential development.

“Growing up, I often shopped with family members at the old Williams grocery store and hated to see the building abandoned and become a nuisance,” Mayor Cain said. “My hope remains to one day have another grocery store locate on the east side of town.”

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