'Round Building' demolition site continues to sit idle

If you've driven by the new Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Art in Downtown Orlando, you likely have seen the tall, gritty mound of dirt that's sprinkled with chunks of concrete behind green fencing.  It's the remnants of what was known as the "Round Building."

Months after beginning the demolition of the building, the company responsible for its dismantling and removal, Crusader Contracting Inc., walked off the job.  The site has been sitting idle since early March.

Two weeks ago, Crusader was given the opportunity to come up with a plan to complete the demolition.  A city spokesperson says the contractor failed to do so.  

On March 17, the City of Orlando sent Crusader a "notice to terminate," saying they did not fulfill their end of the contract. Orlando's chief procurement officer says Crusader's biggest failure was not meeting the project schedule over the last six months before demobilizing.   

On March 18, the city sent the owner of Crusader, Allen Wilkins, a "notice of intent to debar."  That prevents Crusader  from receiving any new work contracts from the city for the next five years.  

The city also required Crusader to provide a performance bond. The contractor purchased that with Capitol Indemnity Corporation.  Now, the bond company takes over the management of the contract, and they will pay a new contractor to clean up the rest of demolition project.

The Round Building was constructed in 1963 and modified through the years to add floors, eventually topping out at seven stories.  It originally housed the American Federal Savings and Loan Association but has had many owners through the years prior to its demolition.
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