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With no bond posted, the fight over Jesse Lee Home is over

Jesse Lee Home on a sunny fall day in September, 2020. The city council voted to tear it down in July.
Jesse Lee Home on a sunny fall day in September, 2020. The city council voted to tear it down in July.(Taylor Clark)
Published: Oct. 1, 2020 at 9:12 AM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - After years, millions of dollars, and rising emotions between community members in Seward, the historic landmark and object of controversy; the Jesse Lee Home is again set to be demolished.

Friends of Jesse Lee Home, was given a chance to raise over half a million dollars in a week to get an injunction from the court that would have prevented the City of Seward from going forward with the hazmat abatement and demolition work.

On Thursday, the City of Seward confirmed they had not met the goal.

That’s not for lack of trying.

Members of Friends of Jesse Lee Home reported donations large and small from descendants from the orphanage, people concerned about historic preservation, and large corporations.

However, “half a million dollars in one week is just too much,” said Dorene Lorenz, chairman of Friends.

On Thursday, Seward Community Development Manager, Jackie Wilde said the start date for the contractor to begin abatement and demolition is to be determined, but only due to rain and flood warnings making conditions unsafe for workers.

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