Mar 012017

3402 Cherry St. (right side of shotgun home).

By Claire Byun

A blighted shotgun on Cherry Street is again slated for demolition, but this time the property owner supports the decision.

Half a shotgun house at 3402 Cherry St. was approved for demolition by the Neighborhood Conservation District Advisory Committee. The house was set for demolition back in 2015 due to it’s blight status after the city cited the owner more than $2,000 in violations.

Arthur Pierre Sr. originally intended to renovate both 3400 and 3402 Cherry St. properties, but construction costs overwhelmed his budget. The city fined him for not properly displaying the home’s address, leaving chipped and rotting paint, not fixing deteriorating weatherboards and a leaky roof in January of 2015, according to city documents.

Katherine Reese, who spoke on Pierre’s behalf, told NCDAC the family supports demolition of the property. Reese said Pierre had the intention to renovate the entire property but exorbitant construction costs prevented Pierre from finishing the project, thus sending the property into blight.

Pierre also has physical limitations that prevent him from doing some of the work, Reese said, so demolition is the best bet.

“We concluded it would be in his best interest to let that property go,” she said.

The family had started working on the property with $100,000, Reese said, but renovation costs pushed Pierre to rely on government sources to bring the property to code. The city will only demolish one side of the shotgun – 3402 – since the other side houses Pierre.

The non-blighted side of the property will be repaired and renovated, Reese said, and possibly rented out at a later date.

“We did purchase with intent to renovate and we did proceed with renovation, but it exceeded our funds,” Reese told the board.

Commission members unanimously approved demolition at their meeting earlier this month. The motion moves to City Council for approval.

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