City repairs prominent downtown Springfield site due to safety risk

The city of Springfield has begun work repairing a prominent downtown building after the owner allegedly hasn’t responded to its orders.

Sidewalks were closed on parts of Main and Fisher streets in May because of safety concerns about the facade of Hull Plaza after a large section fell from it.

RELATED: Sidewalks closed after bricks fall off downtown Springfield building

“When brick falls from multiple stories from the air, even though it’s just a brick, it can be very dangerous,” said Shannon Meadows, the city’s community development director.

The National Road Commons Park is just across the street, she said, so the public nuisance affects the health and safety of the right of way and adjoining properties.

“They fell both in the sidewalk right-of way and the street right-of-way, which has traffic,” Meadows said.

Hull plaza is owned by Robert Hull. He purchased the 76,000-square-foot building in 2015 for $250,000 and has been renovating it. Hull couldn’t be reached for comment on Wednesday.

He was notified that the building was declared a public nuisance, Meadows said, and was in contact with the city about steps to repair the problems. However they haven’t been fixed in a timely fashion, she said.

DETAILS: State of Ohio No. 1 property code violator in Springfield

“Once fall came — and this is a very dangerous time of year for failing facade — he had not made the substantial repairs necessary,” Meadows said. “So the city had to move toward enforcement to stabilize the building.”

On Wednesday, city crews surveyed the building and found water has infiltrated the facade.

“You can have very, very cold nights, where the water will freeze and during the day the sun will get very hot,” she said. “The air may not be hot to us but the sun will get hot and it will thaw.”

READ MORE: Springfield cleans up “biggest trash pile in the city”

That will push out until the brick and a section of mortar collapses, causing the brick to fall.

The city will spend about $15,000 stabilizing the building. That includes fixing any loose bricks and stopping as much water infiltration as possible.

It will continue to work on Hull Plaza until the end of the week and reopen the roads once repairs are completed. The city will later recover the cost of repairs from Hull.

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Politics

Crowded governor field puts Democratic race up for grabs
Crowded governor field puts Democratic race up for grabs

Nobody denies the Democratic field of candidates running for Ohio governor is crowded. But the whether that is a good thing for the party — and its fortunes in November — depends on how the five candidates behave, according to political experts and party officials. “I am not sure we can assume that a tight primary will damage a candidate...
Government shutdown: Will I still get my mail?
Government shutdown: Will I still get my mail?

Hundreds of thousands of federal employees could be barred from working if Congress can’t agree to a budget plan and avoid a shutdown. But the country’s more than 500,000 postal service workers won’t be among them.  Mail service will continue uninterrupted, even during a government shutdown.  That’s because the U...
Government shuts down, negotiations expected through weekend
Government shuts down, negotiations expected through weekend

The federal government shut down Saturday for the first time since 2013 late Friday, with a handful of Republicans and the vast majority of Democrats in the Senate opposing efforts to keep the federal government running for another month. By a vote of 50-48, Senate Republicans fell far short of the 60 votes needed to end floor debate and clear the...
Democrat Kucinich picks running mate in Ohio governor’s race
Democrat Kucinich picks running mate in Ohio governor’s race

Former U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich on Friday chose Akron City Councilwoman Tara Samples as his running mate in his bid for Ohio governor. Samples fills out the field of lieutenant governor candidates in the 2018 race to replace Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who is term limited. Kucinich, 71, on Wednesday announced his decision to run in the Democratic primary...
Losers appeal Ohio medical pot licensing decisions
Losers appeal Ohio medical pot licensing decisions

State officials are scrambling to hold more than 60 appeal hearings for companies that did not win medical marijuana cultivator licenses in Ohio. So far, 68 of the 161 rejected applicants have filed for a “119 hearing,” in which a hearing officer listens to the state and the business present their cases on why the licensing decision should...
More Stories