Neglected Downtown Fresno Buildings

December 22, 2008 2:08:19 PM PST
The wet weather is adding another danger to the public in Downtown Fresno. Some dilapidated buildings are being further weakened by rain.

The elements are taking over.

Water is leaking inside and draining out.

Walls are cracking.

The roof has already partially collapsed.

And for firefighters this downtown Fresno building that was once a haunted house is now a safety nightmare.

Leach: "These buildings just weren't meant to be standing this long."

A red 'x' indicates firefighters shouldn't enter especially with rain adding weight to a weak roof.

Capt Charles Leach, Fresno Fire Department: "Because every time you have one of these, it is a hazard to people in the neighborhood to children that might be nearby them or for homeless people who seek shelter in them."

If the property owner does not cooperate with city officials and the building poses an immediate threat, then the city can demolish the building like here on Fulton Street and San Joaquin. Last Friday, a judge issued an order allowing crews to tear this building down. City officials say that is the last resort.

Deputy City Attorney Charlotte Hylton is watching nine structures in downtown Fresno.

These are listed as dangerous buildings.

Property owners have been notified to make repairs.

Hylton says at least one the former haunted house will most likely be demolished next.

Hylton: "I don't think that building could be saved at this point. Certainly, if the owners come with structural engineering plans that could refurbish it, we will work with them."

Rain may be a good thing to some people.

But for the old and neglected Fresno buildings it seeps through the cracks and weakens from within.


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