A couple of years ago, the house at 4961 Gardiner Drive in the Edgechester neighborhood off Floyd Road burned. It didn't burn all the way down, but it's apparently uninhabitable.
An Anonymous Reader who lives nearby is tired of living near the burned out shell. As are, he says, the neighbors who live on either side of the house.
He said another neighbor, who has a riding mower, cuts the front yard, but the back is a mess that harbors varmints. And who knows what the house is harboring?
Well, as we've learned well here at Inquirer Central, the Columbus Consolidated Government doesn't do back yards. They'll make you keep your front cut, but as we've learned on several occasions, your back yard can look like the set for "Apocalypse Now," and that's just fine.
But we've also learned that you can't just leave a burned up house lying around. It qualifies, as does any dilapidated house, for demolition. The owners can do it, or the city will contract with a demolition company and slap a lien on the property, so the taxpayers get repaid.
Speaking of the owners, I can't find out who they are. On the city tax records, Captive Investments, Llc., is listed as the owner, having bought the property in February of 2011 for about $10,000. That's either after it burned, or they got one heck of a deal.
Problem is, there is no limited liability corporation by that name registered with the secretary of state.
So I talked with Rebecca Wiggins, city building inspector, who pulls the trigger on demolitions, and asked if the house is on her Red D list, or if she knows anything else about it.
She said she'd check into it, and she said she'd condemn it if it wasn't already on the list. By the way, she added, she put the burned out house on Macon Road we wrote about recently on the demolition list.
Not so fast, Rebecca. I've got good news on that front.
I recently got an email from Curtis Duke, an elder at Edgewood Church of Christ on Macon Road, which is next door to the burned out house on Macon Road.
He said the church had been trying for some time to get in touch with the owner, who wouldn't return calls. Not long after the house appeared in the paper, they returned his call.
"The church has negotiated a price for the lot and I signed a contract yesterday and placed a binder on the address and lot. The attorney is now doing the deed research for a closing that we hope will be scheduled for sometime next week," Duke wrote. "We already have received one bid and requested a second bid to demolish the old building as soon as we close on the property."
Duke said the church has no immediate plans for the property other than to clear it so it's no longer ugly and dangerous.
Wiggins said that sounds like a happy ending to her, and she'd take it off the city's hit list.
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