Another abandoned dwelling in Prince Rupert is slated for demolition and removal. This time it’s an old home in the 1500 block of Kay Smith Blvd. that has already been partially dismantled.
The numbers have slowly been growing as the City attempts to enforce its nuisance bylaw around unsightly premises.
In a report to City Council, Building Inspector Allan Scott and Corporate Administrator Robert Grodecki said over the past year and a half the City has received complaints about the condition of the building.
“Staff has attempted to contact the owner by phone and mail, to discuss the appropriate course of action and has received little to no response,” stated the report.
During a discussion about the building a regular council meeting in June, Councillor Anna Ashley asked if a notice goes out to a property owner declaring that something must be done to building within 30 days, and no work occurs, does that mean the City will carry out the work on the owner’s behalf and charge them the costs.
“That’s correct,” said City Manager Gordon Howie, although once council passes a resolution to declare a property a nuisance, the owner has 14 days to respond and can appear before council.
Councillor Kathy Bedard wondered if the property has just come under the City’s radar or had there been previous correspondence about the file.
According to Scott’s report, there have been visual inspections of the property by staff and the fire chief, and a registered letter has been sent to the owner, asking him to remedy the hazards there.
Councillor Sheila Gordon-Payne referred to the building inspector’s report where it stated there had been “Iittle or no response” from the owner to the City’s requests and asked what does “little” actually look like.
“About a year and a half ago when discussions were being taken up with the building owner, he actually made some attempts to do some work and then over the course of the year that slowed down. We used to be able to get him on the phone about this subject, but no longer. We can’t get him on the phone and he’s not returning messages,” said Grodecki, adding the owner was made aware by letter that the property would be discussed at that evening’s council meeting.
Given the photographs provided by staff to council, Bedard said she would be voting in favour of the dwelling’s demolition, yet again mentioned she was concerned there wasn’t any correspondence from or to the owner attached with the building inspector’s report.
“This is probably a disturbing site, not only to the neighbours, but the community in general, and it doesn’t look like it has been cared for at all. It’s just that we usually take really good care about contacting people and having some kind of communication back and forth,” she said.