HOUSTON - Obvious progress has been made nearly one month after KHOU 11 News first started asking questions about downtown’s most “dangerous” building.
The abandoned and vacant former Days Inn hotel located on 801 St. Joseph Parkway has been an eyesore for residents and visitors alike for nearly two decades.
Houstonians doing business in downtown told KHOU 11 News the building had become a hazard with falling shards of broken glass and a place that attracted crime.
City code enforcement officials gave the owners a three-week timeline to secure entry points into the property, cover up all visible graffiti, remove all broken windows from the building and hire a round-the-clock security guard to supervise the property.
Nearly one month later, progress has been made on almost all of the city’s stipulations, except for the 24-hour security guard.
“Enforcement is a useful tool the city will continue to use to make Houston as livable and safe as ever,” said Houston’s public works and enforcement spokeswoman, Alanna Reed, in an e-mailed statement. “But punishment is not the goal.Compliance is. In this case the owner is making efforts to comply, and city departments will continue to work with the owner and monitor the case until we get the final result that the public deserves.”
Passersby in downtown Tuesday did not seem to share the optimistic sentiments of the city.
“Well, they need to renovate it or tear it down,” Ed Welch said. “I’m not so sure it can be renovated, so let’s implode it.”
The property’s owners could not be reached by Tuesday evening. In previous interviews, the owners said they had been approved by the parent company of Holiday Inn to construct an $85 million hotel.
The former Days Inn remains at the top of the city’s most-dangerous downtown buildings list.
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