August 21, 2007 - Posted at 10:28 p.m. CDT
JONESBORO, AR-"We want to protect the people that live there, plus the people that live in the surrounding apartments," said Joe Little, the City's Interim Cheif Building Inspector.
That's the reason the City of Jonesboro condemned three apartment buildings at the Willows Apartment complex last week.
Code Enforcement says it's their hopes the property owners will quickly get the facilities back up to standards.
"What we are hoping is that they will completely gut those apartments and come back with new sheetrock and new everything on the inside, to make them livable," said Little.
He says they have showed apartment manager Patrick Hubbard the problems.
"We went through each of the apartments, occupied and unoccupied and showed him what corrections needed to be made," said Little.
Little says the city has now set up a meeting with the owner of the Willows Apartments to discuss future plans.
We attempted to contact owner, Thomas Seabrook on the phone at his residence in Colorado, but as soon as I told him who I was. He hung up the phone pretty quickly.
However, at this point, the ball is in his court when it comes to repairs.
"It will be up to them, how and when, but there is a time and there is a deadline to get those things done and up to code," said Little.
Little says, he simply wants the complex to regain the hold it once had on a thriving part of Jonesboro.
"They were at one time the most beautiful apartments in Jonesboro. Mr. Seabrook did a great job building them and taking care of them. I think they've been around 30 to 35 years. They were always an asset to the city, and hopefully they will be again," said Little.
We are told the city will meet with Seabrook on September 4th.
He is expected to have 45 days before the city will re-inspect the structures to see if they are up to code.
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