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Evening Gazette Our Say: Sat.

A developer's plans to bring an end to the existence of Billingham House have disintegrated.

What must not happen is that the hopes of those wanting to see the back of this derelict building are allowed to disintegrate with it.

Stockton Council is doing all in its power to force owners Bizzy B Management into either repairing or demolishing the former ICI office block, which has turned into a dangerous eyesore.

In the meantime, however, the fact that the site is deemed not to be suitable for homes - coupled with the cost for knocking it down estimated at pounds 1m - means it continues to stand, a bleak and ruinous blight on the area.

There are hopes that a new developer can be found to make use of the site by turning it into offices, a garden centre, light industrial units or some such use.

Much, though, will depend on the feasibility of such a scheme if the developer has to take on demolition costs too.

The council's fight with Bizzy B is critical to the future of Billingham House.

For the sake of all those who live within its shadow the sooner this thorny issue is sorted out - and the building consigned to the past - the better.
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Title Annotation:News Local
Publication:Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)
Date:Feb 3, 2007
Words:207
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