When is the town going to handle a dilapidated house? 

Published 10:56 pm Thursday, October 24, 2019

Beechwood resident asks about house and fire hydrants

COLUMBUS—A Beechwood resident asked the town again about road improvements and the status of a house that now has a shower curtain hanging over a broken window. 

Columbus Town Council met last week and heard from Susan Johann during citizen comments. 

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Johann said it has been over a year since the town began talking about fire hydrants in the Beechwood subdivision. She also asked about a house at 75 West Beechwood that the town has been discussing as being dilapidated. 

“She has a very lovely turquoise shower curtain waving in the breeze,” Johann said. “It’s an open window that anybody could go up. I think it’s broken and that’s why she’s hung up something to keep the water out.” 

Johann spoke of animals being able to enter the house and the number of animals that live around them. 

Town manager Tim Barth said he has tried to contact the owner and has left numerous messages and is not getting a response. He said he left the owner another message on Thursday saying she needs to call him by Friday. 

“I’m going to look at our ordinance and see if there’s something we can do,” Barth said. “I know it’s an eyesore.” 

Councilman Mark Phillips asked if the town can condemn the property. 

Barth said the owner did fix the hole in the floor and did numerous things inside the house. He also said the owner told him she wanted to sell the house but wanted to get it ready to sell. The house is not yet for sale yet, Barth said. 

Phillips said if the town is at a place to take control of the house it may be time to that and move on. 

Barth said he would send the owner a certified letter. 

On a new water line with fire hydrants in Beechwood, Barth said he has five easements and has to send copies of those to the United States Department of Agriculture. He said he expects those will be approved this week and the town will be able to send the project out for bid. After about a month, the town can open bids and see what it can do about the project. 

Once the water line and fire hydrant project begins, town officials said they will see about fixing some road damage in Beechwood.