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Building on N. Spring saved from demolition, for now
North Spring Street update.jpg
This 122-year-old building has been temporarily spared from its scheduled demolition.

A 122-year-old building on North Spring Street has been given temporary reprieve from the wrecking ball.

“Since the time that we submitted this order, we’ve had discussions with the property owner’s engineer and we’re willing, from a staff perspective, to table this motion until next month provided that the property owner is willing to work with us on creating what is referred to as an agreement to abate the nuisance,” said Community Development Department director David Baird.

That statement was made Tuesday before the McMinnville Board of Adjustment Appeals, a rarely used board to consider appeals when property owners do not agree with orders levied by the city Community Development Department or staff’s interpretation of building codes.

In the case of 307 North Spring Street, the department ordered demolition after the property was inspected by Chuck Riforgiate of Municipal Inspection Partners and deemed unsafe. Owners Graciela Ramirez and Jose Manuel Hernandez appealed that decision. 

Hernandez admitted the property “looks bad” and explained why the original building permit lapsed.

“We did pull a permit last year. I think that was in June,” Hernandez said. “We didn’t get funded until Dec. 17. Construction on the building started on Dec. 23, I believe. We have conducted work as fast as possible. We’ve done everything that has been asked of us to do, as far as structural engineering reports. We had a good relationship with the previous building inspector, Stan Phillips. Anything he asked, it was done.”

Owners were attempting to restore to building to be used as split commercial and residential when the city deemed the property “unsalvageable” and “unsafe” and ordered demolition.

“We are ready and willing to do the work,” said Hernandez. “We have the funding. We request the city allow us to continue repairs on the building.”

An abatement agreement is a contract between the city and property owners that will outline the steps and timeline for renovation. The demolition stay could be temporary or permanent.

The city has barricades along the front, back and side of the property. Those will remain in place until the building is deemed safe. 

Board of Adjustment Appeals members unanimously tabled the measure to demolish 307 N. Spring Street to allow time for construction of an abatement agreement.