City takes action on dilapidated properties

Published 11:45 am Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Alabaster will demolish a foundation off Forest Parkway after it was deemed a danger to local children. (File)

Alabaster will demolish a foundation off Forest Parkway after it was deemed a danger to local children. (File)

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

ALABASTER – A house foundation soon will be demolished after several Alabaster residents said the abandoned structure presents a danger to children in the neighborhood.

The Alabaster City Council voted unanimously during its June 10 meeting to demolish a foundation at 304 Forest Parkway off Alabama 119, accepting the Alabaster Housing Abatement Board’s recommendation to tear the structure down.

A foundation has remained on the property since a fire destroyed the house originally built on the lot, city leaders said previously.

Before the council voted to demolish the foundation, homeowners near the property said the lot represents a danger to children in the neighborhood.

“There are 16 kids under the age of 15 on that street. The back wall of the foundation is about nine feet tall, and they are jumping down constantly,” said Alvin Jackson, who lives near the property. “It’s bad, and it’s getting worse as the days go on.”

Jackson’s neighbor, Kai Smith, said several boards lying on the property have nails sticking out of them, and echoed Jackson’s concerns about children’s safety.

Nobody spoke against tearing down the foundation before the council voted on the matter.

The council also held a public hearing on 10601 Shelby County 17, which previously was deemed unsafe and dilapidated by the city’s Housing Abatement Board. During the hearing, the property owner, Tim Caton, said he had repaired a freestanding garage on the property and had boarded up a fire-damaged house on the lot.

“I’ll show you 60 houses in the city that are in worse shape than this one,” Caton told council members as he displayed several pictures of his property.

Council President Scott Brakefield multiple times asked Caton to address the council, not the crowd gathered for the meting, and said there was no need to demolish the structure if the repairs were made.

The Housing Abatement Board was scheduled to review its recommendation to demolish the Shelby County 17 property during a June 10 meeting, and the council will vote on the matter during its July 14 meeting.