Knock down, drag out… now what?

An MEM Enterprises crew begins the tear down and removal of the fire-ravaged Spring Street Landing Building

— Video footage by Journal correspondent Jeremiah Lord


What’s left of Spring Street Landing, former home of Downriggers, is fast disappearing into large dumpsters being trucked to a mainland dump in Whatcom County.

Michael E. McCutcheon estimates it will take his crew from MEM Enterprises about two weeks to remove the smoky debris from last year’s fire. The contract amount with the Port is about $72,000.

Very little of the debris was salvageable, though a few large laminated beams and a few doors are being set aside for Port use or sale, said McCutcheon’s foreman.

McCutcheon said the possible presence of asbestos fireproofing insulation and lead based paint made it necessary to send his crew to a hazardous materials class and hire Walker Specialty Construction of Snohomish to make sure Department of Labor & Industries hazardous materials handling and disposal regulations are complied with. Rain on the first day of demolition kept the debris wet and the hazardous dust at a minimum.

Meanwhile, Port Commission Chairman Greg Hertel reports that talks with insurer Enduris Washington continue.

“The port and our insurer are a couple of hundred thousands dollars apart” on an insurance settlement of more than $2 million, said Hertel, who expects a settlement to be finalized soon.

Conceptual drawings of what will replace the SSL building will be presented to the public on Thursday, Feb. 6. The Friday Harbor Port Commission is hosting the update meeting with new drawings for the Spring Street Landing site and the Waterfront Master Plan. The meeting will be at Friday Harbor House from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.