Owner: James Marvin Bradford
Year Built: ~1920s
Around the corner from 502 and 504 Roxboro (which I wrote about several posts ago) on Queen Street are these great small Craftsman houses.
|601 North Queen St.||603 North Queen St.|
Unfortunately, they have the same owner as 502 and 504 North Roxboro. Together with those damaged houses, and other parcels owned by Mr. Bradford, they form a chunk of property that takes up about 2/3 of the block.
This entire neighborhood is severely threatened by neglect, those who are amassing parcels as an investment, institutions looking for surface parking, and a city that 'fixes' such problems by knocking down houses. No non-profit, city agency, or downtown booster organization is fighting for the integrity of this neighborhood.
It is a common tactic by absentee landlords (another top 5 winner in the anti-preservation sweepstakes) to milk historic properties for all they can get out of them, investing nothing in them. Once the properties become truly uninhabitable (because they push it way past what should be the definition of habitable), they wait for the city to tear it down. If the city doesn't move quickly enough, they push people to complain about the property. If that doesn't work, sometimes there is a fire, which can always be ascribed to the homeless folks who were squatting in the house.
James Marvin Bradford's abandoned property, outlined in red, including 502 and 504 N Roxboro (see my earlier post) and 601 and 603 N Queen.
Update: Four years have passed, and this mess is still going on. Bradford thinks he is going to sell these houses to someone to move for him, saving him the demolition costs - all for a development pipe dream that will never come to pass. Meanwhile, two houses that could be part of the rejuvenation of Cleveland-Holloway continue to rot and bring down the neighborhood. This should be criminal.
601 Queen, 10.22.10
603 Queen 10.22.10