Franklin Park Trolley Barn
November 9, 2012 5:29 pm at 5:29 pm #515115
The Franklin Park Trolley Barn is included in the Columbus Neighborhoods’ Olde Towne East production premiering Monday, December 12 at 9pm on WOSU
Photo of Trolley BarnDecember 1, 2012 4:11 pm at 4:11 pm #515116
Minnie M. McGee, Defendant (owner of the property at 1610 Oak Street) will face Judge Harland Hale on Contempt of Court charges on Monday, December 3, 2012 at 9:30am in Courtroom 15C, 375 S. High St.
The prosecutors office encourages residents and other interested parties to attend if possible!December 2, 2012 1:13 pm at 1:13 pm #515117
Let’s all show up and pile on Minnie!
Honestly, it’s not unusual for property investors to overextend themselves. It happens all the time. The real estate and financial meltdown only made that more possible. It’s obvious this property has a lot of appeal. She must have felt it was worth getting into either to flip it or to develop. $250K isn’t chump change, and I assume she’s been paying the taxes and perhaps insurance as she’s held it. When you sink that much capital into an investment you tend to want to hold on and hope an opportunity will come along to save you. At least she didn’t default on a loan or not pay her taxes.
I’m not suggesting that action isn’t warrented, but realize she undoubtedly bought it thinking things would turn out much more positively. For those who critize, where was your plan in 2003 and where were you when the property went to auction? Perhaps it would have gone to landbank and been demolished back then if there were no competing bids or to some other investor that would be facing the same losses she is today.December 2, 2012 3:23 pm at 3:23 pm #515118
Yes, let’s. I feel completely comfortable criticizing a property owner who clearly is not a rookie yet feels no need to responsibility to maintain her property to code during whatever period it takes for her to take the next steps of rehab or redevelopment. In my experience, this behavior is the rule rather than the exception; I would guess it’s because the consequences for it are insignificant and VERY slow in coming. I mean, she’s owned the property for almost 10 years, and she’s only now facing any charges for this?
I have never seen a case of this kind where the property owner herself lived in a neighborhood that would tolerate this kind of bs.
If she can’t live up to her responsibilities as a property owner, she can sell the property at a loss and take the consequences of her bad bet, like the good upstanding citizen she wants us to think she is.December 2, 2012 4:16 pm at 4:16 pm #515119December 2, 2012 4:40 pm at 4:40 pm #515120
Yes, let’s. I feel completely comfortable criticizing a property owner who clearly is not a rookie yet feels no need to responsibility to maintain her property to code
I don’t at all know Minnie, so I won’t claim to know what her real options or circumstances are at the moment. I’m just speculating.
I mean, she’s owned the property for almost 10 years, and she’s only now facing any charges for this?
I suspect that the city has other priorities and knows the are limits to what they can accomplish.
Has anyone approached her to negiotiate a deal? (maybe that could happen at the hearing?) Does someone out there clearly have the capital and abiity to renovate the site right now? I know the area and the building but I’m not following this closely so I don’t know for sure. I’m guessing the answer is “no”.
It’s still hard to get loans, and this project will take someone with lots of capital and experience to get done. There are also probably better alternative opportunities for such investors and developers. Were this not the case, it might already be happening.
If there’s no one out there to assume the ideal role of master renovator, all the city can do is try to push her to comply and seize the property if she doesn’t. Then what happens? More of the same unless the city spends tax dollars to remedy it themselves. As is, it’s an eyesore and a lost opportunity but the site probably only poses real risk to trespassers and perhaps firemen if someone were to torch it. The city can barely handle code enforcement on active, occupied buildings.
The city knows all of this, which is why they haven’t been jumping on it. Of course the application of political pressure may be a motivator for them. Perhaps that’s what’s happening now.December 2, 2012 5:09 pm at 5:09 pm #515121
It’s beyond something as simple as an eyesore or minor inconvenience to area residents.
Allowing this apparent slumlord (thanks Franklin Co Auditor) to hold the entire neighborhood back by hoarding this property is so wrong in every way.December 2, 2012 5:34 pm at 5:34 pm #515122
Owning over 75 properties in Franklin County is not a case of a naive investor who suddenly has found they have over-extended their resources.
Look at this sweet deal for this property owner! Purchased a property in 1993 for $64.5K – sold in 2010 for $223K. That’s doing pretty well in our current real estate market!
And it is, truly, so much more than an eyesore. As it is now, it is a hazard to the homes surrounding this over 3 acre site!
The owner holds a position as Assistant Dean of Engineering and is the Director of the Minority Engineering Program at Ohio State who has received multiple awards. Would this be proudly highlighted in a curriculum vita as a service achievement?December 2, 2012 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm #515123
She is more like a hoarder. She has received multiple good offers at above-market prices, but she thinks the property is worth three times its value. She has been singing the same song for the last five years, and does nothing. She is a 30-year realtor who keeps saying she needs to put it on the market to confirm her wildly unrealistic pricing, but she never puts it on the market. Slate roofing has been falling off the roof onto the sidewalk and street, four of the structures have had partial building collapses, this is demolition by neglect. She is so wildly out-of-touch that she puts herself in the position of having a quarter million demolition bill tacked onto the property, which is more than its appraised value of $189K. She has spent $16K per year in taxes and stormwater billings, and has let her losses mount year after year while refusing offers of help. Great property, bad owner. A good outcome would be for Judge Hale to come down hard on her, and gentle on the property.December 3, 2012 12:02 am at 12:02 am #515124
That is sad.December 3, 2012 11:35 am at 11:35 am #515125
OK. It seems that you guys know who you’re dealing with, and it sounds like you have legitimate issues with her. Good luck at the hearing. It is a very cool property and it’s important to the neighborhood. Hopefully someone more responsible can get possession and fix it.December 4, 2012 5:50 pm at 5:50 pm #515126
From The Dispatch
Continuance Granted by Judge on Contempt of Court ChargesDecember 6, 2012 4:54 am at 4:54 am #515127
I think we should get the true facts before making judgments. It is my understanding that the offers she received required her to act as the mortgagor, basically financing the property for the buyer. If a prospective buyer cannot even get a bank or other financial institution to finance his offer, why should she act as a bank when there are concerns about his ability to develop the property? Looking at pictures on the Trolley Station Facebook Page, it appears the property was “safe” enough to host a public viewing with families in attendance in 2010 – that does not seem to gel with the premise that she has not made efforts to work with the community or that it has been “dangerous” for almost a decade. What efforts have been made to work with the owner – or is there another agenda we are not being told about here on this forum?December 6, 2012 3:13 pm at 3:13 pm #515128
I think we should get the true facts before making judgments. It is my understanding that the offers she received required her to act as the mortgagor, basically financing the property for the buyer. If a prospective buyer cannot even get a bank or other financial institution to finance his offer, why should she act as a bank when there are concerns about his ability to develop the property? Looking at pictures on the Trolley Station Facebook Page, it appears the property was “safe” enough to host a public viewing with families in attendance in 2010 – that does not seem to gel with the premise that she has not made efforts to work with the community or that it has been “dangerous” for almost a decade. What efforts have been made to work with the owner – or is there another agenda we are not being told about here on this forum?
What you may have heard from your undisclosed source aside…
YES, there have been many attempts to work with the owner. Franklin Park Area Block Watch for one – JamesF can speak specifically for them.
I’m not aware of any hidden agenda, just a lot of passionate neighbors are tired of this “unfit mother” hoarding this property and the city should take action for the benefit of all.
What’s more, the fact that she holds this major landmark hostage in a neighborhood intent on revitalization, is the fact she owns dozens and dozens of properties in the neighborhood that are some of the most decrepit sub minimally maintained rentals. Money money money.December 7, 2012 1:33 am at 1:33 am #515129
What actions can the city take? If it takes the property, will all of the problems that led to court action be solved immediately? Will renovations that lead to development, such as those wonderful artist renderings, take place right away? Someone earlier in these posts mentioned a price tag of 10 million plus — Are you saying that someone out there has that type of financing to develop this property barn, and this person is ready to go with a legitimate offer on the table, and that the property owner turned it down? Or, are you saying that the city is ready to spend 10 million plus to develop the property? Your comments seemed geared toward some type of “punishment” for the owner as opposed to a solution for a historic site, which is one of the reasons I wonder if there is another agenda.
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