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Follansbee’s namesake demolition underway

Updated: Thursday, September 4 2014, 06:28 PM EDT
BROOKE COUNTY, W.Va.-- Having stood more than 110 years as a pillar in a community that is named after it, Follansbee steel is coming down.
Company officials closed the doors in 2012, citing unfavorable business conditions and the property owners are trying to make the land a more viable sell by razing the plant.
"Well it's sad," Follansbee City Manager John Destefano said. "I mean you never like to see something like this - any business have to go through it. I had relatives that worked here, friends that worked here. It's never good when you lose industry like that."
In the time that has passed, the owners tried to sell the property but were unsuccessful.
"The Berkman family still owns the property and the structures," Destefano said. "What they're doing is trying to market their property to prospective buyers. All of their data indicated that if the buildings were gone, it would be a more marketable property."
Officials say it will take several weeks to pull the structures down but acknowledged that the memory of the operation that started in 1902 won't disappear with them.
"Follansbee Steel has been here longer than we've been a city," Destefano said. "Everybody thinks Follansbee Steel was named after the city. Actually it was the other way around. The city of Follansbee is named after the Follansbee Brothers and Follansbee steel. We were incorporated in 1906 and this was here before 1906."

Follansbee’s namesake demolition underway

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