SALT LAKE CITY -- A demolition crew knocked down an old LDS church in downtown Salt Lake City Tuesday to make way for what the American Cancer Society calls a Hope Lodge. It's a place for people with cancer to stay during their treatment.
“Every year 11,000 Utahns are diagnosed with cancer. And every year over 4,500 patients come from outside the Salt Lake area to get the specialized cancer care that they can get here at any number of our treatment facilities,” said Katie Eccles, chair of the Hope Lodge Board. “And they struggle with where to stay, and how to pay for it when they come up for week-long treatments.”
The Hope Lodge Board wanted to preserve and memorialize this old church by using parts of the old building in the new one.
In addition to that 80 percent of the building material will be reused or recycled for various purposes.
“We are reusing much of the maple flooring we are going to remove the cooper from the steeple and use that as an aesthetic treatment in the building, we just felt that was the thing to do,” said Steve Brown, development consultant for the American Cancer Society.
The demolition crew also volunteered all the man hours as a way to pay tribute to the business owner who died of cancer in January.
“It’s a great thing we wanted to be able to give back in my mom’s name and be able to help people who are facing this horrible disease that they might be able to stay here and have a comfortable place to stay,” said Malissa Ryberg with A-Core Demolition.
Those involved say it's important to preserve the legacy of what came before to build a stronger foundation for what’s to come.