Middletown house in ‘imminent danger’ of collapsing torn down at a cost of $75K

A Middletown house at 2218 Central Ave. that was in “imminent danger” of collapsing and potentially damaging the house next door was torn down at a cost of $75,000.

Acting City Manager Paul Lolli said the family that lives in the house next door at 2226 Central Ave. was evacuated due to a “public safety issue” because of the possibility of an exterior wall falling.

On Tuesday night, Lolli told City Council members the city hoped to have the house knocked down on Wednesday, then Devra Wells, assistant development services director, sitting in the back of Council Chambers, said the house was already 75% demolished.

“Nobody tells me,” Lolli said with a laugh.

Since there was time to inspect the house and determine the potential presence of asbestos due to its condition, the entire house was determined to have asbestos, Wells said. That increased the price and the city paid Vickers Demolition $75,000 out of its general fund.

As a part of the continued partnership between the city and the Butler County Land Bank, in February the Development Services Department submitted project applications for demolition of 14 condemned and/or blighted properties, according to city documents.

The properties were to be demolished by the Butler County Land Bank and the vacant lots would be transferred to the city of Middletown.

After receiving the application from the city, the land bank contacted the owner of the property and negotiated the donation of the condemned property to the Butler County Land Bank, the city said.

Then on April 1, the city was notified by the land bank that the house had become a public danger and it was immediately transferred to the city.

On April 4, the city learned the property had been transferred to the city and a quitclaim deed had already been recorded at Butler County.

About the Author