Comment 56473

By Undustrial (registered) - website | Posted January 15, 2011 at 11:42:20

I was in the building before they ripped that big chunk on the side off. Other than one big busted pipe in the basement, the whole building still had water and power (including roof-mounted solar panels), was almost totally intact and had no obvious problems. I suspect having a large piece ripped off during the HMP demolition hasn't helped, though.

The Vranich family are by far the largest culprits in this kind of property "ownership" downtown. Vacant lots, derelict buildings, frequent fires - this is real estate, Detroit-style.

We know how this game is played. It's old-fashioned blockbusting. Buy keystone buildings at firesale prices, and let them sit and rot, dragging down neighbours until they, too, can be bought up. The rot then continues as each of the buildings are demolished, in turn, over more years (as they can "get away with it") and then they sit as a parking lot until some extravagantly profitable deal can be made to redevelop the whole thing as some extravagantly profitable super-development.

It's the Lister Block all over again, except the Federal Building is bigger and nicer. Another sad day for downtown.

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