Clearly, the old house is not Ponderosa's problem, and shouldn't be. At its own expense, it hired structural engineers and building preservation specialists to look at the two-story run-down structure. Renovation of the structure would be possible, but at considerable expense. Even then, the house would still have small rooms, the back half of the house that is falling down would have to be shored up and rebuilt, the converted second floor apartment also is crumbling along with the flat roof that was installed in the 1950s. None of the experts said the house would qualify under federal or state, or even local guidelines as a building of historical significance. With some renovation, the front rooms of the house might be used by a small business, such as a salon or real estate office, but even then thousands of dollars would have to be spent to make it safe under 2013 fire and building codes.
Ponderosa's proposal to build 12 homes and rip out the unsightly trailer park once owned by the late Jerry Wagner goes to the City Council late next month or in September for reconsideration. On its part, Ponderosa might show the possible uses for the church-owned property, including demolition, and have a representative from the Wagner trust that the church now holds to join in supporting the 12-home project. After all, new homes in a nicely designed cul de sac as planned by Ponderosa would help the church market the property much to the advantage of the neighborhood which has lived with this eyesore for more than a decade.