Three homes in northwest Cedar Rapids face demolition unless someone comes forward to move them by the end of this year.
The Salvation Army purchased the homes to make way for a warehouse for their food pantry, next to their building at 1000 C Avenue NW.
Major Alan Hellstrom said the Salvation Army is willing to give the homes away for a token fee (basically for free) to someone who can move them within their time frame. The nonprofit would like to have the homes removed by the end of 2019 in order to begin constructing their warehouse in the spring of 2020.
As of now, the Salvation Army’s food pantry warehouse is located in Marion, so the group expends time and money to transport the food to their main site in Cedar Rapids.
All of the homes are structurally sound and in good condition. Moving costs would vary because of the differing sizes of the buildings. A rough estimate of moving the smallest home — a story and a half built in the 1950s — is $17,000, which does not include the cost of a lot and new foundation. Additional costs are incurred depending on trees that need to be trimmed and wires lowered or raised along the route of the move, as well as utility hookup fees.
Three vacant city-owned lots are available in the area.
Save CR Heritage board member Nikki Halvorson provided the following research on the homes:
The newest home was built between 1951-1952, and was first inhabited by a Mrs. Gladys A. Welch, who was a factory worker at Quaker Oats.
The larger blue house appears to have been constructed between 1893 to 1894, and occupied by Alexander G. McFarlane, who worked at a variety of railroad jobs, including a fireman and engineer, for the BCR&N Railroad and then later the Rock Island Railroad.
He and his wife, Myrtle McFarlane, also were the first occupants of the house next door, which appears to have been built in 1912. Also listed at the residence were Miss Ethel McFarlane, a teacher at Harrison School, and Herbert M. McFarlane.
Save CR Heritage board members are available to serve as a resource for anyone interested in moving the homes.