Don’t panic: Explosions are from Kansas Highway Patrol training in Lawrence

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Article updated at 3:09 p.m. Friday, July 23:

The days of the vacant Oldfather Studios building are coming to an end — and before it goes, law enforcement is making use of it.

Explosions residents were hearing in the area of Ninth and Avalon near the building at 1621 W. Ninth St. were part of planned implosion and explosion training for the Kansas Highway Patrol, said Lt. Keith Hudson.


Hudson said it was part of some “tactical practice,” but it was done for the day as of roughly 2:45 p.m. Friday.

Lt. David Ernst of the Lawrence Police Department confirmed that LPD personnel were not participating in the training.

Tom Fagan, division chief of administration for Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical, said LDCFM was providing medical standby for the training.

The University of Kansas got permission from the state Board of Regents to sell the Oldfather Studios building, 1621 W. Ninth St., back in May 2019. Plans have been filed to build an apartment complex on the site.

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