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Plains Furniture

People stand outside the former Plains Furniture building Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017 on David Street in downtown Casper. The city will begin demolition of the newer part of the building soon.

Casper’s kids will have a new place to play this spring.

The City of Casper recently tore down the 23-year-old play structure at Paradise Valley Park and are preparing to install a new playground, according to a press release from the Public Services Department. The $47,600 project will be funded using Optional One Cent Tax.

The new playground will offer a variety of equipment including a slide, swings, spinning seats, bongos, bars, a rock climbing structure and two zip lines.

“When we are selecting playground structures, we work to serve all ages of children,” said Parks Manager Dan Coryell. “That is why there will be two fully enclosed tot swings as well as two child swings.”

The press release stated that the city is expecting to complete the project by Jan. 31.

The playground isn’t the only construction project the city has in the works.

At their Tuesday night meeting, Casper City Council authorized a $161,268 agreement with Recycled Materials, LLC, for Phase I of the Plains Furniture Building Demolition Project.

Alex Sveda, an associate engineer of the city, said the project will start in November and is expected to conclude by Dec. 19.

The project will include asbestos-containing material abatement and light interior and exterior demolition, but the building’s original structure will be preserved, according to Sveda.

City officials purchased the downtown building for about $3 million last year, with no exact plans for its use. About one month later, they learned it was hiding a piece of local history.

An old photo revealed that the building next door — a restored 1920s fire station that now houses commercial space — had a garage, which was later covered by the furniture store.

Another discovery was made this summer: Behind the ceiling tiles and white-painted dry wall of the store are the remnants of Nolan’s Chevrolet dealership, a 1920s staple in downtown Casper.

Mayor Kenyne Humphrey said Friday that she’s looking forward to seeing what the historic structure looks like once the newer parts of the building are torn down.

“Our goal is basically just to see what’s under there and then that can steer us in the direction about what will be best [for the building’s future],” she said.

Katie King covers the city of Casper.

Katie King covers the city of Casper.

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Local Government Reporter

Katie King joined the Star-Tribune in 2017 and primarily covers issues related to local government. She previously worked as a crime reporter in the British Virgin Islands. Originally from Virginia, Katie is a graduate of James Madison University.

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