Inquirer: Fallen tree may get Colonial Park home condemned

mowen@ledger-enquirer.comNovember 24, 2013 

Tree 1, House 0.

A Concerned Reader called to say that he's tired of living near a house that has a huge tree lying on it … and he's been tired of it since the tree fell in February.

The house is in Colonial Park, which is near, but is not the same as, Oakland Park, an Oakland Park Reader periodically reminds me. So I rode out to Not Oakland Park to see if it's as bad as my Concerned Reader had described.

Ouch. It was worse.

What appears to have been a very large hardwood is draped over most of the ranch-style house's roof. It seems to have punched its way through the roof and has collapsed a section of the soffit in front.

"What kind of person lets their house stay like that for so long?" I asked myself.

Well, a deceased one, I found out. I did some research in city records and nexis.com and found that a person by the same name and at the same address has gone on to his reward.

So I called Director of Inspections and Code Greg Coates to see what the procedure was for dealing with deceased people who can no longer care for their property.

Coates said they go through the usual registered mail routine trying to contact whoever owns the house. Then, if that can't be done, they put a legal ad in the newspaper (thank you very much), and if no one objects, they condemn the place.

Then whoever tears it down gets a nice check from the city. And, in this case, a few hundred dollars worth of firewood.

Coates said this property had already been reported to the city, inspected, and the process has been started to find the owner. (Good luck with that.)

My guess is that it will soon be condemned and not-so-soon be demolished. They've got a backlog of buildings that need the wrecking ball.

Stay tuned.

Update

You may recall a month or two back when a Concerned Caller named Sandy pleaded to have something done about an ugly, decrepit house on Miller Road, not far from the gasoline tank farm.

I reported it and then updated a couple of weeks ago that Inspections and Code had inspected and told the owner what he had to do to get it back to code.

Well, my phone rang and I'm not sure whether it was Sandy, but she was a Happy Caller.

"That house is gone," she said. "It's just completely gone!"

Not that I doubted her, but I rode out and checked. Sure enough, the ugly blue house is gone … to the landfill, I suspect. But I hope they recycled as much as possible.

Seen something that needs attention? Contact me at 706-571-8570 or mowen@ledger-enquirer.com.

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