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61 Demolitions in Less than 4 Years in Kent

Kent's landscape is changing fast as crews demolish old buildings to make way for new structures

If you don't think Kent's landscape is changing, just take a look around.

History is being made — and sometimes erased — from downtown to the residential neighborhoods and even on the Kent State University campus.

Since 2009, 61 buildings have been demolished or are set to be demolished, according to records.

Here's how the numbers break down over the past few years:

  • 2012: 8
  • 2011: 11
  • 2010: 19
  • 2009: 23

Those numbers exclude , garage demolitions and buildings razed on the campus. And they vary from houses to businesses.

Some of the demolitions are related to a number of projects that include the new Fairchild Avenue Bridge, the downtown redevelopment work and the Esplanade extension. Others are simply old or condemned houses and factories no longer in use.

If nothing else, the demolitions have created a curiosity both in the present and historic sense. Shutter bugs are drawn to the sites to capture images preserving the structures before demolition and to chronicle their doom as they are dismantled brick by brick.

Historically, small efforts have been made by people championing a building's past worth — whether anecdotal or documented. And the debate rages on: is it the people or the structures they inhabit that make a community?

Meanwhile, enjoy some of the videos and photos from the demolitions over the past few years. And if you have photos or footage of your own, feel free to add it here or to the .

James Thomas March 12, 2012 at 03:03 PM
Creative Destruction is necessary for Progressive change. In order for the new to be built, the old has to come down.
Matt Fredmonsky March 12, 2012 at 03:44 PM
I like that phrase, "Creative destruction." Captures much of what's going on in Kent now.
Teresa K. March 12, 2012 at 04:58 PM
61 take downs, how many new went in their places? or are scheduled to? Thank goodness the economic disaster that struck everywhere else in the world didnt hit Kent, Ohio : )
Pat March 12, 2012 at 05:55 PM
Kent has gotten carried away-- the city manager has ruined our fine city--I wish they would kick him out. The sky line is so different --not that I don't like change as I do, but not so radical. But like time shows us time and time again all things go back to the way they were. Davey Tree had offices downtown in the 60's and now they are coming back down town. The city used to have tons of places to eat and then they went by the way side--not they are coming back too. Kent downtown area used to have many family oriented stores, Wrights Department store, McCroy's, Grant's, Men clothing stores also and several shoe stores too. I am not seeing clothing stores coming to kent but they will too--it becomes full circle. It is just too bad the city has put us all in debt for years to come.
robert March 12, 2012 at 07:48 PM
James , Matt, I think "Creative Destruction" is on the epitaph of the city of Kent which we once knew.Pat must have seen it as I have. I ask " Where is Kent Ohio ?" Oh yes there it is . It is a part of Kent State University and the new and questionable improved downtown Kent .
TimN March 17, 2012 at 11:30 AM
Pat- There is a store in downtown Kent, In Acorn Alley 2, that carries both shoes and clothing.

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