Test Blast Successful for Twin Towers Implosion

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) -- A test blast Thursday morning at Arkansas State University's Twin Towers Dormitory was one of the final preparations before the much-anticipated implosion of the building on Sunday.

The dorm that housed students at ASU for about forty years is expected to come down in about thirteen seconds.  In a precursor of things to come, Controlled Demolition Incorporated blasted nine columns in the Seminole Twin Towers Dormitory Thursday morning.

"What we don't want to do is we don't want to blow up the column.  Meaning we don't want to blow concrete all over the place.  What we're trying to do is disrupt the compressive capability of the columns themselves so the building will fall down," said CDI Principal Doug Loizeaux.

Mangled columns are the end result of that test.  Different columns used for the test had different amounts of explosives to see if they need more or less.

"By virtue of doing the test blast we've probably reduced the amount of explosives we'll use in the final blast by 15%," said Loizeaux.

The interior looks nothing like it did several months ago.  Anything that could've held the building together has been taken out.  Even some of the staircases are now just hanging chunks of concrete.

The demolition team says the purpose of this isn't to blow the building up, but to disrupt the structure so it will fall.

"Every ounce of work force it took to put the building up is potential energy waiting to be used.  When we use our explosives it starts the building falling and it becomes kinetic energy," said Louizeaux.

This project has been years in the making at ASU, and even though the Twin Towers dormitory has served them well over the years, they're ready to see this chapter closed.

"It has taken a significant amount of planning and a lot of time for everybody involved in it.  We'll be happy to see it over with," said Terry Carty of ASU Facilities Management.

The Louizeaux said this has become a spectator sport over the years and because of that the university is expecting a large crowd on Sunday.  They are prepared to provide security for it.