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Published May 07, 2012, 10:15 PM

Fergus Falls moves toward demolishing Regional Treatment Center

Fergus Falls, MN (WDAY TV) - It's been a staple in Fergus Falls for more than a century, but now the city council is faced with the possibility of demolishing the infamous Regional Treatment Center and its historical Kirkbride design.

By: WDAY Staff Reports, WDAY

It's been a staple in Fergus Falls for more than a century, but now the city council is faced with the possibility of demolishing the infamous Regional Treatment Center and its historical Kirkbride design. Despite more than 100 people showing up in support of the center, the city council wasted no time voting unanimously to prepare plans and specifications for demolition.

The city has entertained several ideas for the building, from a movie set to different alternative schools to business parks, but none passed the city council approval process. Tonight's meeting was at capacity with supporters as dozens waited outside the council chambers.

The city council made it clear that it did not approve of demolition as the final answer, it just wanted to get the ball rolling. No matter what, an array of boos could be heard when the motion passed.

Laurie Mullen - Friends of Kirkbride: “That's why people move to a community, it's distinction, something that sets it apart from any other place. This is what that offers us.”

Tim Hunt - Against Immediate Demolition: “You might as well put a sign entering the city on either side of the freeway, "Approaching Fergus Falls, Welcome to Nowheresville."

Afterwards, the council did vote unanimously to create an aggressive marketing task-force to give one last-ditch effort at saving the Regional Treatment Center. The city still has nearly $900,000 available in a discretionary fund to use as it wishes.

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