St. Rodent BaitMay 13th, 2007 by Bad Guy Joe
...So I'm out driving around town with a fellow shutterbug when she spots something up on a hill as we drive by - and until that moment I had forgotten all about this location that's been on my to-do list for a few months now. I wheel around the block, park the grandma mobile and we climb on in...
This location is a rare find. It's a 150+ year old abandoned church located in a heavily wooded lot that consumes an entire city block - making it one of very few patches of green space in an otherwise seriously industrial area. The property was originally an Episcopal church until the mid 1990s, when it was sold to a korean methodist group for a small sum of money - in keeping with the original deed to the land which stated it needed to be kept for religious purposes only. 2 years ago the koreans quietly sold the property to a developer for a few million (making a huge profit mind you) and quietly disappearing into the night.
The developer of course has done exactly what developers love to do: tried to demo the buildings without permits or abatement of asbestos or lead, and has even been accused of operating an illegal trash transfer on the site for a short time. Vigilant neighbors and community groups have been fighting tooth and nail to save the place but who knows what the final outcome will be. From the sounds of it the developer wants to sell now and wash their hands of the whole fiasco. Those involved are lobbying to have the space turned into park land, saving the structures for a museum or community use.
Until that time comes, I'll lovingly call this place 'St. Rodent Bait' - for more reasons than just the signs found on the buildings here. Use your imagination - cuz there's plenty of dirty rodents chewing at the history of this town... I for one would love to see a few go belly up and lose for a change.