Motel Granted Temporary Injunction, Following Condemnation

Published 03/05 2014 09:12PM

Updated 03/06 2014 08:49AM

Fort Wayne Neighborhood Code Enforcement wants to condemn a motel on the east side of town. City officials say the infrastructure of the building is unsafe for residents. But Wednesday afternoon, management at the Hallmark Inn was granted a temporary injunction.

"We're doing so much better. We're trying to fix this place up, cause when I got here it was a mess," said Jesus Pizano, a manager at Hallmark Inn. "We're gonna fight until the end. We're going to help people out because some of them live on the streets. We're trying to do our best."

Since Tuesday, Pizano says the motel handed out nearly $10,000 in refunds to dozens of residents moving out.

Hallmark Inn has about 120 rooms. The Allen County Building Department recently declared half of these rooms uninhabitable for sanitary reasons.

"I thought it was wrong how they're doing it. Simply because their people have for the last few months been trying to fix this place. I'm going to stick it out as long as I can because this is where I call home," said Shane martin, a resident who decided to stay at the motel where about 30 rooms remain occupied.

Property owner Raj Patel has been in contact with Neighborhood Code Enforcement since February of 2013. 

Cindy Joyner, the director of Fort Wayne Neighborhood Code Enforcement, says the motel's staircases and walkways lack structural integrity. 

"We did get a structural engineer involved. We have a report. We wanted to make sure that what we're saying was backed up by a reputable firm," said Joyner.

Allen County Health Officials have also received several complaints about bed bugs, cockroaches, and no heat in certain rooms. Staff allowed WFFT inside a room declared unsanitary, and a room that was recently renovated to show the improvement.

Management at Hallmark Inn say they've invested more than $200,000 in repairs, including several metal beams to support the second floor. Managers say the motel is hoping to spend a million dollars on future renovations.

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