Neighbors are sick and tired of the old hotel. It’s been falling apart for eight years and it’s becoming more and more dangerous.
“It’s an eyesore for sure,” said Chris Shilling, who lives nearby.
The hotel has been looted by thieves who’ve stolen copper pipes, anything of value, including the swimming pool pumps.
“It’s been time for the owner to do something for years,” said Carol McEwen, who can see the abandoned hotel from her front yard.
The place is popular for vagrants and drug users. Neighbors are afraid someone could be hurt if not killed here. Evidence of vandalism is everywhere, including broken mirrors, TVs, and other items.
“Just a lot of late night stuff that were not too comfortable with,” Shilling said.
Bridgeton Mayor Terry Briggs said city officials are also fed up. They recently went to court to force the owner to do something. The judge agreed ruled in the city’s favor, but nothing has happened since.
Bridgeton could spend close to $2 million demolishing the structure and cleaning up the asbestos and send the bill to the owner, but there’s no guarantee the city would get its money back. Citizens would suffer.
“We’d have to discontinue services to the rest of the city residents or drop a project and then residents come back and say, ‘What happened to our service?’ ‘What happened to our project?’” Briggs said.
Neighbors aren’t as upset with the city as they are the hotel owner.
“I understand the position Bridgeton’s in,” McEwen said. “It’s frustrating; very frustrating. It’s scary to drive through there.”
There is some hope. A new owner took over the property within the last years. It appears he may be making moves to tear down this place and put a business here in its place. You can bet everyone will be watching this closely.