January 24, 2014

Demolition of South Haven church scheduled

The former First Baptist Church is in such bad shape, even the city building inspector refuses to go inside the structure according to zoning administrator Linda Anderson.  The hundred year old building sits at the corner of Center and Huron Street, just a short distance from Maria's restaurant and Murphy's Antique Mall.

A few years back, there was a flurry of activity that held great promise.  Some visitors may recall the summer season when the owner opened the doors to sell the antique furnishings, including the church pews, pipe organ parts and miscellaneous furniture.  New roof shingles were installed, the entire exterior was given a fresh coat of paint...and nothing happened.

The building sat empty and continue to deteriorate as the realtor, property owner and city officials waited for the best solution.  Fortunately for the city of South Haven, there is assistance from a non-profit organization and a state grant to fund the demolition of the building.  The legal process includes several steps by the city, including a ruling by the Construction Board of Appeals and a court order.  According to the newspaper, demolition should be completed by April.