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Demolition Work Begins on Former Brewery Building

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Preservationists who had hoped to protect the Aztec Brewery buildings in Barrio Logan suffered a setback Wednesday when the property’s owners began preliminary demolition of the historic structures.

Crews, operating on provisional permits issued by the city of San Diego, began tearing out windows and frames on the buildings at 2301 Main St.

“The permits allowed them to pull the windows out (before starting) actual demolition,” a city spokesman said Wednesday. “They might be able to get their final demolition permit in a day or two.”

San Diego City Council members in March agreed to stall demolition for 60 days in order to give Foote Development Co. one last chance to negotiate a development agreement with Northern Automotive, the current owner. That permit delay period ended Tuesday.

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Council members in March made it clear that they would allow demolition if Foote or another developer failed to strike an agreement.

On Monday, a Foote spokesman declined to comment on those discussions. “We have met, and we have talked,” the spokesman said. “But I wouldn’t want to jeopardize the (negotiations) by saying any more than that.”

Community groups in the Barrio Logan threatened Monday to seek legal action aimed at stopping demolition. It was uncertain Wednesday, however, if any court action had been initiated.

The buildings were erected in 1911 and 1915. The city earlier agreed to temporarily display murals that were removed from the brewery’s rathskeller.

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