City moves closer to tearing down the old Clarion hotel - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

City moves closer to tearing down the old Clarion hotel

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New details in the effort to tear down the old  Clarion Hotel. The abandoned building could have a date with the wrecking ball in a matter of weeks. As you may know there was a fire there a few weeks ago and the big concern is that if it doesn't come down soon,more people will be put at risk.  The former hotel was the focus of a City Council Economic Development meeting Monday afternoon.

The project is on the fast track so that work could begin next month. Council is expected to take action Tuesday and the entire site could be cleaned up and ready for sale before the end of summer.

The building hasn't been a hotel for years. Jim Oedy owns Genesis Village across the street, "It's hurting business and I don't think it will get better until that building comes down."

Overgrown grass, a lot of broken windows and graffiti covered walls are just some of the problems with the high rise. The most serious concern is obviously safety. Toledo Police cameras have captured people coming in and out of the building in recent weeks. Toledo Fire Department Chief Luis Santiago says a fire two weeks ago proves what a safety hazard the old hotel has become, "It's a big nuisance, but for me it is all about the old hotel being a public hazard and a hazard to our people. We don't have the luxury as firefighters to say we are not going in." 

The City of Toledo Director of Development Matt Sapara says the plan is to have demolition crews start work on July 7th, "We're hoping to have it taken down in 30-60 days and have the site cleaned up a short time later so we can begin to market it . We have had some companies interested in the property but of course no one will move forward until the building is down." 

Sapara says the property is owned by the state of Ohio through a forfeited land sale. The Lucas County Land Bank will buy it from the state and then transfer it to the city. 
The city will then have to come up with the cash to tear it down. $300,000 will come from  Toledo's Capital Improvement fund, $200,000 from the US EPA and the rest will be a loan from the Land Bank. Wade Kapszukiewicz says the land bank will loan the city up to $250,000,"This is not something we've done before, we usually do work in residential neighborhoods but this is an important project. We do a lot of important work with the city so this is a project we wanted to be involved with." The city will have to pay the land bank back by the end of this year.

Of course Toledo will recoup some, if not all the money they will have to spend on demolition when the land is sold. Council is scheduled to vote Tuesday afternoon and they are expecting at least three bids for the job to come in by tomorrow afternoon

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