HILL COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – The luxury home that has been teetering on the edge of a cliff over Lake Whitney is going to be set on fire Friday morning. City leaders met Thursday to discuss options for demolishing the structure before it fell into the water, in order to minimize the amount of debris that would go into the lake.
The chalk-like rock underneath the home started eroding away last year, eating into the property along Overlook Court. Authorities first learned about the situation in February. The home’s owners are from Florida and moved out weeks before the ground started to collapse. They only used the home part-time. The home was built in 2007 and valued at around $800,000.
The Hill County Sheriff’s Office said that this is the only home in jeopardy at this time. However, the Army Corp of Engineers are keeping a close eye on other nearby properties along the north shore of the lake.
Hill County does not require building permits in unincorporated areas, except for septic systems. The community where the home sits (for now, at least) is in an unincorporated area. “It could go at any time,” said Chief Deputy Mark Wilson. “We just don’t know.”
Rather than waiting out the process as originally planned, county officials met on Thursday to talk about demolishing the structure. Burning the home was one of the ideas mentioned at that meeting, but Hill County Judge Justin Lewis did not have authorization to order that demolition. It would have to come from either the home’s owners or the Army Corps of Engineers, since they own the lake.
The homeowners on Thursday evening decided to burn the home. That demolition-by-fire has been set for 10:00 a.m. on Friday morning.
The hope is that, by destroying the home before it falls down, less materials would be dumped into Lake Whitney. Of course, the structure could always fall into the lake on its own before crews arrive to set the fire. “Deputies told me there are cracks around the house up to two to three feet wide,” Wilson added on Wednesday.
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