Partial teardown to circus arena starts

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VENICE, Fla. - Monday in Venice demolition crews began tearing down parts of the once winter quarters of the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus. However, those who have worked to save it say all will not be lost.

Workers salvaging the steel for scrap but not everything is coming down. Over the next few weeks crews will be removing the old rotting wood and roof of the arena. What they will be leaving there are the steel bones to the building put up by circus in the early 60's. Engineers say it's solid.

Those with the Venice Circus Arts Foundation say the surgical demolition is something they would have had to do anyway. They're still working to raise millions in order to save what they can and rebuild this piece of area history.

A second building is also being partially preserved. The foundation working on what's called the Gunther big cat building. That's were famed animal trainer Gunther Gebel-Williams worked with the animals. They hope to be able to put a new roof on soon.

Seven South Newsroom reporter Josh Taylor will have more on the story coming up this evening on ABC 7.