STROUDSBURG -- The first part of a redevelopment project in Stroudsburg is underway. For the next few weeks, demolition crews will be on lower Main Street tearing down several buildings to make way for a new Rite Aid.
That section of Main Street will be fenced off for at least the next two weeks while demolition work is being done.
Officials say this project has been in the works for quite some time and when all is complete, a new Rite Aid will be built.
One by one, seven houses and a former bar on Main Street in Stroudsburg are being knocked down.
Maria Clark from Stroudsburg watched as crews began to work.
"I am fascinated by how quickly they got started. Just a few days ago, everything was fine."
People who lived in those houses moved out a few months back. Developers bought the properties with plans to build a new Rite Aid pharmacy.
"It's good for the neighborhood and it will be a change. A lot of the houses were old or being occupied by people who shouldn't be in them and I think it's an overall good thing for the neighborhood," said Stroudsburg resident Michael Curcio.
People who use the current Rite Aid in Stroudsburg say it is an older building, so they are happy to see demolition for the new one underway just across the street. They hope to see the building built soon.
"I think it's great. I love Rite Aid," said Monica Sicilia. "I keep saying I am going to get a job here because I am here every day, but it will expand the store."
"I have been coming here for years, 15 years, to tell you the truth, and they have always been helpful but it's nice to see something newer in the neighborhood," said Curcio.
Officials at the demolition site say as long as the weather cooperates, it should take about two weeks to knock everything down.
The plan is to begin construction on the new Rite Aid by mid-summer.