Police: Parts of Woolfe Street open due to collapsed wall

Police: Parts of Woolfe Street open due to collapsed wall

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Bricks are being removed from Woolfe Street in downtown Charleston after the wall of a nearby building collapsed, blocking the roadway.

Charleston police spokesman Charles Francis said Woolfe Street near Meeting Street is back open to traffic, but the King Street side is still closed to traffic.

Burt Chacon said the wall came down around 5 a.m., shaking the nearby Holiday Inn, where he works. He says he saw a cloud of smoke and then noticed all the debris in the street.

"I thought it was an earthquake, it really shook the whole building. It shook very hard, very down bass, boom," said Chacon.

Dump trucks arrived at the scene around 7 a.m. and workers began clearing the debris from the road.

The City of Charleston's planning department says the incident is very rare. Now the City has to decide what to do with the building next.

"It's a concern we have to be careful about in this case it was an accident that happened. The oldest part of the wall the part that has collapsed will be coming down no doubt about it, but we'd like to save part of the eastern end which is a newer edition to it. Hopefully some of it can be saved as long as it's safe we will," said City of Charleston Director of Planning Tim Keane.

But Chacon thinks the building should be torn down before someone gets seriously hurt.

"This is a good enough excuse to do it, I mean it's been like that for awhile, this is the second time, want to wait a third time before someone gets hurt," said Chacon.

Keane says the building was actually under demolition, but then came all the rain two weeks ago.  He says the city takes every precaution when it comes to demolishing a structure.

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