Water Street apartment building removed from blight list

A prominent Water Street property has been removed from the City of Warren’s blight list.

An apartment at 500 Water St. was before the Blighted Property Review Committee. The committee had first considered the property for a first declaration of blight a couple months ago and tabled action until last Thursday’s meeting. Only one apartment in the building – Apartment 7 – was before the committee.

“Utilities have been reinstated. Abatement of the interior of the apartment… has been underway,” Scott Taylor, zoning and ordinance officials, said.

He said that the majority of a debris pile outside of the apartment has been removed and “things have been cleaned out.”

Taylor told the committee that the inside of the apartment no longer meets the criteria for blight.

“It is property maintenance,” Taylor said. “He is moving forward with the property.”

He acknowledged that the effort is “not on the fast track” but said that “positive forward progress is always better than nothing.”

Director of Codes and Planning Randy Rossey said that the “only thing” that would “remotely qualify it for blight at the moment” is that it’s vacant. “It’s vacant because he’s in the process of rehabbing the interior.”

“Certain properties for whatever reason generate a lot of citizen interaction,” Committee chair Ray Pring said. “I’ve never had a property other than this one where people have stopped me on the street and said ‘What are you going to do about this one?'”

Taylor noted that the owner has a plan for the back of the building, which faces the Fifth Ave. Bridge.

“He is very well aware that this is, for better words, a lightning rod,” Rossey said. “(He’s) very aware his property needs some work.”

The committee tabled action regarding the property at 509 Prospect St.

“We’re fairly confident this property will get in the hands of somebody that will abate all the issues,” Rossey said.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper? *

Starting at $2.99/week.

Subscribe Today