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County asks for data on Harmon implosion plan

Clark County Building Department officials want to meet with the structural engineering firm hired by MGM Resorts International in an effort to understand its analysis of the troubled Harmon Tower at CityCenter.

MGM Resorts last week presented a plan to Clark County that calls for the unfinished 27-story Harmon to be demolished because its engineering firm said the building could collapse in a major earthquake.

In a letter to CityCenter Senior Vice President of Facility Improvements William Ham, Clark County Director/Building Official Ron Lynn said he had reviewed the field notes from structural engineer Weidlinger Associates of Southern California, containing “defects/nonconforming works” on the Harmon. The building was originally planned to be a 47-story luxury hotel and condominium tower within the $8.5 billion CityCenter complex.

Lynn asked that a meeting with the consultants be set up “so they can explain to us the basis for the analysis.”

MGM Resorts and Perini Building Co., the general contractor for CityCenter, are locked in a bitter construction-defect lawsuit over the Harmon. Perini claims the Harmon, which was not completed after Clark County building inspectors found problems with its structural work, can be repaired and have asked for the opportunity to fix the building.

The Clark County district judge overseeing the lawsuit would have to approve MGM Resorts plans to implode the unfinished building if the Clark County Building Department allows the implosion to move forward.

The company that would oversee the implosion said it would take six months to prepare the building for the demolition and four months to clean up the site along the Strip.

Weidlinger said in its report it would need “12 to 14 months” to determine if the Harmon could even be repaired. MGM Resorts officials cited public safety concerns for its reasoning behind wanting to implode the Harmon.

 

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