Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Last night at City Hall

Largo owns up to derelict look and will raze its two buildings on West Bay

City commissioners decided it was too expensive to renovate two city-owned buildings on West Bay Drive in the city’s redevelopment area. The city bought them in October 2006 for $800,000.

JIM DAMASKE | Times

City commissioners decided it was too expensive to renovate two city-owned buildings on West Bay Drive in the city’s redevelopment area. The city bought them in October 2006 for $800,000.

The city plans to raze two boarded-up buildings on West Bay Drive.

Owned by the city of Largo, the structures are two of the worst-looking buildings on the road, said City Commissioner Woody Brown.

"It's bad when you drive down West Bay and two of the boarded-up buildings are the two that the city owns," Brown said Tuesday afternoon.

At a work session Tuesday night, city commissioners also considered refurbishing the buildings. But, after learning rehab cost estimates and hearing Public Works director Brian Usher describe the saga of maintaining them, city leaders decided the properties may be too expensive and difficult to fix and maintain.

"If I had a preference, I would just scrape them away and forget about them," Commissioner Rodney Woods said.

The buildings, a former drive-through coffee shop and a former print shop, sit on properties targeted by the city for redevelopment. Largo bought them for about $800,000 in October 2006, hoping to market them to a developer.

Marketing of the properties is at least a year away, said Community Development director Carol Stricklin.

The two-story print shop, vacant since the city bought it, has been vandalized. The city has had to paint over graffiti and fix broken windows and broken doors.

The city has also had to combat unwelcome visitors — humans and rodents — inside the former print shop, Usher said.

And about a year ago, Usher said, the city spent about $5,000 or $6,000 to rid the shop of termites.

As for the former coffee shop, Usher said the cost to bring it up to code would likely be prohibitive.

Nearby business owners said the Pura Vida coffee shop was fine when it was up and running. But it went downhill after the business left about eight months ago.

The cost to demolish both buildings is estimated at $23,875. Stricklin told commissioners it might cost from about $45,000 to $80,000, to rehab part of the former print shop, based on an estimate for basic repairs two years ago.

Mayor Pat Gerard was initially reluctant to raze the print shop and leave a vacant strip of land in its place, but after the 20-minute discussion, she was convinced.

"Fine," she said. "Go for it."

Largo owns up to derelict look and will raze its two buildings on West Bay 04/28/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 29, 2009 8:10am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Report: Trump asked intel chiefs to push back against FBI collusion probe after Comey revealed its existence

    National

    President Donald Trump asked two of the nation's top intelligence officials in March to help him push back against an FBI investigation into possible coordination between his campaign and the Russian government, the Washington Post reports, citing current and former officials.

    From  left, CIA Director Mike Pompeo; Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats; and National Security Agency Director Adm. Michael Rogers take their seats on Capitol Hill on May 11 before  testifying before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on major threats facing the U.S. [Associated Press]
  2. For Gov. Rick Scott, 'fighting' could mean vetoing entire state budget

    State Roundup

    Every day, Gov. Rick Scott is getting a lot of advice.

    The last time a Florida governor vetoed the education portion of the state budget was in 1983. Gov. Bob Graham blasted fellow Democrats for their “willing acceptance of mediocrity.”
  3. Romano: Time is up chief, make a call on police body cameras

    Crime

    Excuse me chief, but it's time to take a stand.

    St. Petersburg police Chief Tony Holloway
  4. Potential new laws further curb Floridians' right to government in the Sunshine

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — From temporarily shielding the identities of murder witnesses to permanently sealing millions of criminal and arrest records, state lawmakers did more this spring than they have in all but one of the past 22 years to chip away at Floridians' constitutional guarantees to access government records and …

    The Legislature passed 17 new exemptions to the Sunshine Law, according to a tally by the First Amendment Foundation.
  5. Fennelly: This season's Chris Archer is a pleasure to watch

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG

    At this time last season, through 10 starts, Rays pitcher Chris Archer was 3-5 on his way to 9-19.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Chris Archer (22) throwing in the first inning of the game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the New York Yankees at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, May 21, 2017.