RENO, Nev. (News 4 & Fox 11) — Demolition is now 'on the table' for 10 historic homes in the Gateway District south of UNR, according to a University spokeswoman.
Historic preservationists were hopeful that the homes, primarily built in the late 1800s and early 1900s, would be relocated after Burning Man recently announced interest in purchasing them.
But earlier this month, Common Ground Urban Development, which handles real estate for Burning Man, informed UNR that it would be backing out of the deal, citing concerns about the fast timeline.
"Common Ground initially informed UNR on October 20 that the university’s timeline and schedule is not realistic and that Common Ground was withdrawing its application," wrote Burning Man spokesman Jim Graham in an emailed statement.
"We hope UNR will offer the extended deadline to other applications. Our desire has always been to prevent these special homes from being destroyed."
Thursday, UNR spokeswoman Kerri Garcia told News 4-Fox 11 that the deadline will more than likely not be extended, and that as a result, demolition is "on the table."
Garcia said that the two private buyers and Burning Man were the only three bidders that met the requirements for purchasing the historic homes.
There was no immediate timetable for when the homes could be torn down.
Below is the full statement from Burning Man officials:
Burning Man Project has always supported, and continues to support, securing a viable solution for saving and relocating the homes locally.
From the outset, Common Ground Urban Development’s proposal was an option of last resort, intended to prevent these historical buildings from being destroyed. During Common Ground’s feasibility analysis, they initiated conversations with potential community, capital, and development partners. Although UNR has been working on this project for some time, Common Ground learned through its due diligence process that broader community engagement has been an ongoing challenge for this project.
Burning Man Project is specifically interested in values-based partnerships. For more than 20 years, Burning Man has been exploring and collaborating on public and private partnerships in northern Nevada. When entering into a new community project, Burning Man Project’s values and responsibilities require working in collaboration with the people living in the community. In addition to concerns about the timeline, Common Ground has not found the base of local support necessary for this project to be successful, and these limitations prevent us from moving forward.
Common Ground initially informed UNR on October 20 that the university’s timeline and schedule is not realistic and that Common Ground was withdrawing its application. We hope UNR will offer the extended deadline to other applications. Our desire has always been to prevent these special homes from being destroyed.