Once historic, it is now history.
The Clarinda-Page building in midtown Omaha fell to the wrecking ball Thursday, months after preservationists lost a fight to save it.
A real estate arm of Mutual of Omaha had the building demolished as part of an unspecified redevelopment of the block southeast of 31st and Farnam Streets.
The Clarinda-Page, with its eye-catching streetfront, had been the subject of impassioned debate. The century-old apartment buildings more recently had been turned into condominiums, but the Page building was never completed and was condemned. The Clarinda condominiums were losing their value, sliding into disrepair and shrinking in value.
Meanwhile, Mutual of Omaha was looking to redevelop the block, just east of its Midtown Crossing development, into an office park.
Mutual and owners of Clarinda condominiums asked the city to rescind the building’s landmark status, which protected it from demolition. They argued that the building was beyond saving and wasn’t truly historically significant, and that the landmark status would drive away potential redevelopers.
Preservationists and many neighbors fought to preserve the building as architecturally and historically significant, and as a beautiful part of the cityscape. They contended that the Clarinda-Page could be redeveloped.
The Omaha Planning Board and City Council agreed with Mutual. The council voted in July to strip the landmark status.
Turner Park North LLC, owned by Mutual, bought the building in mid-July.