Century Old Building Collapses After Truck Rams Corner

Published 05/21 2014 06:29PM

Updated 05/21 2014 07:01PM

I called the Evansville Building Commissioner this morning for an update with the condition of Lanhuck's. He said he would have to get back with me with plans for the building. While I was waiting gravity already decided what would happen next.
Since a car smashed into the corner of Lanhuck's Tavern Monday morning many neighbors expected this, the century old building would eventually fall. "Everytime I walk outside I look over there because at first it wasn't that bad and then the second day it started caving in and today it just collapsed," said Kiahnna Wilkerson.
Bricks spilled out over Columbia Street. Crews were on scene to cut power. Fireman were at the ready, but somehow the building stood steady under one Corinthian column. The owner of Landhuck's Jim Lang lives upstairs. His clothes and some of his belongings are now flapping in the breeze. Lang heard the building creaking as it continued to settle after the wreck. This morning he moved some valuables away from the front of the building to a more secure place in the back. Just as he walked out on Columbia Street his home and business began to crumble. "I thought it was a truck. It just sounded like a regular truck. I came outside and the building was all over the place," said Wilkerson.
More than nearby neighbors heard the crash. Shannon Langston heard it fall from a block away. "I saw the building go down and bricks flew across the road and dust everywhere. I was just like 'wow.' it was a big ol' bang."
Lang was able to go inside the building and retrieve his cats, but for the rest of his belongings and his livelihood they are in jeopardy of becoming a pile of dust. Lang says he wants to save the building, but the Building Commission has other ideas. An engineer will decide by 5 o'clock if the building is salvagable. The Building Commissioner sees it as a public hazard and recommends it be razed as soon as possible.


The Building Commissioner signs an emergency demolition order of Landhuck's. Crews say it will be flattened by Wednesday night and debris will be cleared by the end of the week.

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