DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — City officials likely will demolish three historic but deteriorating buildings at Fort Des Moines unless private donors offer the estimated $6.2 million needed to save the granary and two mess halls.
Des Moines officials tell The Des Moines Register that there are holes in the granary's ceiling and floor, and the basement is a safety hazard. Officials also say there are structural concerns with the mess halls.
Preservationist Jack Porte says demolishing the buildings will diminish the site's historic value.
Fort Des Moines was built in 1901. Officials say it's the first base in U.S. military history where African-American officers trained to serve in leadership roles during World War I and where women trained during World War II.
The state Historic Preservation Office must approve all demolition or alteration plans.