KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Demolition on a former Hickman Mills elementary school in south Kansas City began Wednesday morning.

The school district said the former Symington Elementary School at Ruskin Way and Ditman Avenue became a safety concern and needed to be torn down.

“It was a liability for the district and the homeless have been getting in and catching it on fire and so we have to demo it and just turn it back to dirt so they can sell the property or whatever they want it to be in the future,” Nathan Sedlack, construction worker, said.

Lynn Goehring with the Hickman Mills School District said leaders are still considering what to do with the area.

“Find ways that we can make sure that we’re really supporting the community in different ways and tearing down the building and making it more of a park like atmosphere provides beautification to the community itself,” Goehring said.

Demolition crews expect the building to be torn down by next week, but the entire demolition project is expected to take about six weeks.