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Minneapolis ‘trash house’ to be demolished

Fourteen trash bins of material were removed last summer from this Sixth Street

MinnPost photo by Karen Boros

Fourteen trash bins of material were removed last summer from this Sixth Street Northeast house.

With the owners’ acquiescence, a two-story Minneapolis duplex is scheduled for demolition after nearly 18 months of complaints from neighbors.

The property owners, listed as Alice and Brenda Leese, did not contest the order to demolish the building at 1126 Sixth St. NE. when it was considered Monday by City Council’s Zoning and Planning Committee.

In October 2010, the owners received a Director’s Order to Demolish but appealed, saying they wanted to have Habitat for Humanity renovate the dwelling. The owners were given an extension to explore renovation.

Then, in May 2011, the Fire Department was called to the property to investigate a “gas leak.” 

What they found was a vacant dwelling with a number of unattended cats and an excessive amount of clutter.

The owners were given until July 2011 to clean out the building, but they again asked for more time.

Finally, last August, the city hired a contractor who removed 14 trash bins full of material from the building.

“It was severely contaminated with cat urine and cat feces,” according to Kellie Jones of Administrative Services, speaking for the city’s Inspections Department. Once the building was empty, further damage to floors, walls, ceilings and the roof was discovered.

Cost estimates range from $145,140 to $211,102 to renovate the property, which has a market value of about $195,000.

Demolition estimates ranges from $24,864 to $33,374. The demolition would take place in 60 to 90 days.

Two Cities blog, which covers Minneapolis and St. Paul City Halls, is made possible in part by grants from The Saint Paul Foundation and the Carolyn Foundation.

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Comments (6)

What happened to the cats? :(

What happened to the cats? :(

Move to Deconstruct or Remodel

Oh my gosh, 14 "trash bins", what's that like half a dumpster?
Who comes up with those numbers and why is the City acting so foolishly? It's high time we start using DECONSTRUCTION services rather then high cost demolition contractors. Saint Paul has an amazing deconstruction program. Why don't we? It's cat urine for Christ sake and they treat it like a meth lab.
I'd be beyond happy to live in that neighborhood and remodel that house. The exterior still looks like it's in fine shape. Siding and roof are alright. Just gut it out and finish to code, so I can live there!
Do I need to start an affordable deconstruction crew, spin off of All City Improvements? I could take that house down to neat stacks of reusable materials for $15,000 if it needed to be done, which I don't think it does.
Demolition is wasteful. Here is a video of Saint Paul leaders congratulating themselves on their ability to recognize sustainable creative process innovation.

So I vote to save the house, re-assess, evaluate or estimate the nature, ability, quality, price and potential of said "trash house" by someone with some practical comprehension. I then move to deconstruct, if removal is still desirable (by the neighborhood, not the city contractor buddy network).

One cities trash house is another cities treasure. -R.Rolfe

Put it up for auction & rehab!

I agree with Ray, I have been in this house many years ago, and at that time it was a great home, originally a single family converted to a duplex. I am sure there is way worse houses in the neighborhood that should be tore down, but I bet this one doesn’t need to be!
There are plenty of rehab people/companies out there that I bet could resurrect this home for much lower cost than the reported numbers either back to a duplex or a nice large single family!
As Ray says, gut it and start over, it’s only cat urine and more than likely only on the floors!
Put it up for auction!

Just a few comments

The trash bins were actually Large Dumpsters!
There were 14 alive cats and a few dead ones.
The smell was so unbareable at times that one was unable to sit outdoors and enjoy the weather. The smell was not only from cat urine and feces!!

I live by this home and it

I live by this home and it was 19 dumpsters that were taken from this home the foundation is bad the roof has holes the ceilings have fallen in and it is bug and mouse infested. Yes I was in this home years ago also back when a mother and daughter owned it and you could have eaten off the floor it was so clean BUT not the case now. The city took 5 of the dumpsters out of the just garage alone. The smell is still there and we could Not be outside all last summer. There was human waste in bathtub due to the plumbing not working. This home needs to come down so we can enjoy our yard and life again. 14 live cats and 3 dead ones don't make for a happy life and its not just cat smell. Its over 20 years of a home not being cared for.

Oh Gosh...How people can live

Oh Gosh...How people can live in such conditions??? It's awful and disgusting and...Aw, I even don't know what else to say. The decision about demolishing this very house is more than right!