College Implodes Detroit-Area Office Building

SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (AP) – A 17-story vacant office building in suburban Detroit has been imploded.

In a matter of seconds Sunday morning, North Park Plaza in Southfield fell upon itself into a mound of dust and rubble.

Oakland Community College owns the property just north of Detroit and auctioned off the chance to blow it up to the highest bidder.

Graduate Andrea Wilson got the honor to start the controlled implosion after a person who pledged $8,000 chose to remain anonymous.

The college bought the 42-year-old building earlier this year and says it has no immediate plans for the land.

A total of $12,000 was raised from the auction. Proceeds will go to a college foundation that pays for scholarships and other student programs. Oakland Community College has five campuses throughout Oakland County.

“It was the night of my graduation,” Wilson told the Oakland Press. “Not many people can say, ‘Hey, you know I blew up a building once.’ I’ve got to say that this is the best graduation present I could ask for.”

About 400 people were on hand to watch the building fall.

“The best part was when the top two stories fell,” 10-year-old Daniel Fortino told The Detroit News. “How did they rig it so nothing else falls around it?”

Daniel was joined by his 10-year-old friend Nick Bradburn.

“I thought it was gonna be one big bang and then the bottom would fall,” Nick said.

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