Springfield Mayor Mike Houston doesn’t think the Bel-Air Motel property will move without at least some help from the city.
The long blighted property is on the market with a $750,000 asking price, plus city fines. Houston thinks the city might have to entice potential buyers with block grant money to raze the building.
“The economic development tools that are available to the city of Springfield for this particular project are fairly minimal,” Houston told WTAX’s Alex Degman on Wednesday’s Ask the Mayor. “But again, we would work in any way we could to try to have something happen.”
It’s unclear exactly how much would be available in block grant money, though Houston says such grant programs have seen reduced federal funding in recent years. Given the condition of the building and the size of the lot, Houston doesn’t think it’s worth saving.
Houston also says the property won’t change hands until hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines are paid on hundreds of code violations. The building went on the market earlier this week.