Investigator | Cleveland's 'worst house' still standing despite promises

Why is this condemned home still standing in the Glenville neighborhood?

CLEVELAND - Some call it the worst house in Cleveland.

A councilman gave it a date with a wrecking ball, a promise to residents in this Glenville neighborhood.

That demolition date came and went. Almost three months ago.

But, yet there it stands. A condemned shell. And a threat to housing values and public safety.

“This house should have been taken down a long time ago," said Mike Nelson, president of the local branch of the NAACP.

"This is the worst looking house in the city of Cleveland. If there’s one worse than this, I'd be shocked."

The house on East 100th Street at Garfield Avenue, just south of St. Clair Avenue, was condemned more than two months ago. Windows are gone, floors caved in. Brenda Bickerstaff has lived next door for years.

"It’s an eyesore,” she said. “People who want to sell their properties around here, it’s going to bring property values down."

Councilman Kevin Conwell vowed in March that the house would be demolished within three months.

“It will come down,” he told 'The Investigator' Tom Meyer. “Give me three months.”

It’s now August.

Conwell now says the demolition process has been bogged down. He’s not even sure it will be removed by year’s end.

“If we’re lucky,” he said.

Bickerstaff does not blame Conwell. Rather, it’s the bureaucracy she said that stalling the demolition. And it’s the residents who suffer.

"The people who are in charge, the commissioner, their assistants, and the people who work in that department should come down and tear down this house," she said.

There is some good news on distressed properties in the city. The Western Reserve Land Conservancy found earlier this year that vacant properties are down 50 percent from four years ago and only about half or 4,000 need to be taken down.

© 2017 WKYC-TV


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