Iowa Residents Concerned Over Long Vacant VA Hospital

KNOXVILLE, Iowa (AP) — Residents of an Iowa city are growing frustrated with the federal government’s inaction on a long-closed Veterans Affairs hospital that has been allowed to fall into ruin.

The Knoxville hospital closed in 2004 when the VA decided to move most of its services to a location in Des Moines.

The Knoxville hospital has 39 buildings, some of which date back to 1905. Residents say many of the buildings have mold, asbestos, leaking roofs and peeling paint.

Gail Graham is the central Iowa director of the VA health system. She says the VA is working to improve the grounds and plans to hire a private security firm to stop vandalism.

The federal government hopes to sell the property to private developers within a year.

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