Unkept complex center of neighborhood's concern

March 7, 2011 10:20:41 PM PST
Graffiti, illegal dumping, even rats -- neighbors in one north Houston community can't bear the site of an old, abandoned apartment complex. And they want something done about it.

Nearby residents tell us the abandoned apartment complex on Patrick and Hamilton is not only an eyesore, but also a dangerous property attracting rodents.

"They are terrible," nearby resident Gloria Rios said.

"It's real, real ugly," another neighbor added.

Neighbors on Hamilton Street say it's hard to say anything else when you are forced to look at the graffiti and illegal dumping plaguing the abandoned apartment complex every day, that is, unless you are Rios and the problems come running to your side of the street.

"The rats, big rats... about 11 or 12 of them all around here," Rios said. Residents say the old apartment complex has looked like this for about three years and the vantage point from SkyEye HD shows an even bigger eyesore. Neighbors say they have made calls to the city about it.

"It just doesn't look too good for the neighborhood," Cesar Reyes said.

So we put on a call to the HPD Neighborhood Protection Division and found out last October, the complex was cited as a dangerous building. A few days later, a letter was sent to the California property owner and he was given a deadline to fix the problem.

We were there Monday as an inspector came out to the property, and now the division says because of calls from Eyewitness News, there will be a follow up inspection Tuesday, and if the problems are not corrected, the city will take action at the expense of the property owner.

"I would like to see something built new there, you know, or just tear them all down," Rios said.

According to the Neighborhood Protection Division, because the property doesn't have a citation or an order against it, demolition is not scheduled right now.

HPD's Neighborhood Potection Division reports seven violations since 2004 that have been corrected by the owner. However, current owner Apartments Remodeler based in California, has at least one open violation