Columbus seeks to take ownership, demolish burned home

The city of Columbus will be moving ahead with plans to tear down a house on Hinman Street, nearly destroyed in an October fire.

Fred Barnett, the city’s code enforcement officer, asked the Board of Public Works and Safety this morning to begin the process of seeking to take over the property. That would require a quit-claim process where the homeowner gives up the property to the city. Barnett said that the property is in the name of a man who is deceased and had been owned by his wife.

Barnett said that despite the home’s dilapidated state, police have had to come several times to run off squatters who are trying to live in the burned out hulk.

The cost to tear down the property is estimated at about $12,000 assuming the county landfill agrees to waive the disposal costs of the material, Barnett said.

After the city acquires ownership and cleans up the property, it would then seek to have another home built there. That could mean selling the property to recoup the costs, or giving the home to a not-for-profit organization that has a program to build homes.

The board agree to begin the process of acquiring the property.