By Steve Klamkin WPRO News
Neighbors and city leaders gathered in the South End of Fall River Tuesday morning to watch as a wrecking crew began demolishing the old King Philip Mill, a longstanding hazard and eyesore that a developer plans to replace with single-family homes.
“I think it’s a wonderful thing,” said Geraldine Viveiros, who lives nearby and lined up with a group of neighbors to watch the demolition crew begin their work. “This is a good day for Fall River.”
“This is a property that has plagued this neighborhood, it’s been a fire hazard, and eyesore,” said Mayor Jasiel Correia.
“We’ve had to have a fire watch here, it’s been very costly for the city, but it’s important that we make sure our residents are safe in this neighborhood,” Correia said.
Developer Robert Kfoury bought the 750,000 square foot mill property earlier this year, and said that he plans to build 26 single-family homes that will sell at market rates.
“I stepped forward, I said if all fails, no other person wants it, no other developer wants it, I’m willing to step forward,” Kfoury said. He described himself as an engineer who has redeveloped other properties in Fall River.
Kfoury said two, sprawling stone edifices will take two months each to demolish. He will clear the site to make way for the homes, as well as a view of the adjacent Cook Pond.