WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Keokuk Demolishing Former Elks Lodge, Night Club

Jan 9, 2017

The city of Keokuk has hired Keokuk Contractors to demolish the former Elks Lodge at 601 Blondeau Street. The building, which was built in 1911, is more commonly known to many in the area as the former Palace nightclub.

The city had to go to court to acquire the building.

City Administrator Aaron Burnett said the former owner of the building passed away several years ago and the California-based corporation listed as the owner was dissolved. He said the court handed the building over to the city based on Iowa's dilapidated building laws.

He said the asbestos has been removed from the building and site preparation is underway.

The estimated price tag of the demolition is about $120,000.

Burnett said it's difficult to absorb that kind of expense, but he said the city could not allow the building to fall into further disrepair.

He said there could be some interest in the site once the building is removed but declined to elaborate.