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National Guard soldiers returning to Willmar on Saturday after 10-month deployment

Willmar traffic will be diverted during Sunday demolition of church

WILLMAR -- The demolition of a 90-year old church that's scheduled to take place early Sunday morning in downtown Willmar will affect local traffic for several hours.

The Templo Mahanaim Assemblea de Dios Church, located at U.S. Highway 12 and 7th Street, has been condemned as unsafe by the Willmar City Council. The owners are demolishing the rambling brick structure.

Traffic will be diverted during the process, which is estimated to take 4-8 hours.

According to the Minnesota Department of Transportation, the eastbound lanes of west Highway 12 on Litchfield Avenue in Willmar will be closed to traffic beginning early Sunday morning as crews begin demolition of the church.

Traffic will be diverted to the westbound lanes of Highway 12, one lane in each direction, according to Diane Beck, from the MnDOT District 8 office in Willmar.

Message boards, signing and traffic delineators will direct motorists through the work zone.

Seventh and Eighth Streets will also be closed to traffic.

Motorists are encouraged to find an alternate route.

The building was constructed in 1921 and was used as a church until 1979. It served as a law office from 1980 to 1999. In 2001, it was bought by Templo Mahanaim Assemblea de Dios and served as a church for a number of years until the congregation could no longer afford to make repairs.

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