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It was almost surreal watching the heavy machinery tear away pieces of the brick and steel today of what once was the Bangor Civic Center.

All of my memories of time spent in the building came flooding back as I watched Cianbro construction employees, garbed up in protective gear, as they removed portions of the Auditorium walls.

"We're taking a lot of the exterior envelope apart on this building. This exterior envelope is hazardous material so we very carefully have to take it off and very carefully have to dispose of it," states Jon DiCentes, Cianbro Project Manager.

Primarily, the hazardous materials referred to is asbestos.

Once that is dealt with, and the Civic Center side is knocked down completely, DiCentes anticipates starting the actual demolition of the auditorium side of the structure by June 24th.

That work will entail "surgical demolition" due to the close proximity of the Auditorium to its replacement, the new Cross Insurance Center.