GREENSBORO, N.C. -- The City of Greensboro says it cost an estimated $36,089 safely shut down Heritage House.
The property on West Meadowview Road was condemned after the power and water were shut off due to delinquent utility bills.
Moving residents out of the deplorable living conditions wasn’t easy or inexpensive but city staff say it was necessary.
“I think it boils down to human welfare,” said Greensboro Interim Assistant City Manager Chris Wilson. “It was not OK. Why was it important? It was important, because we support our community. We're here to help our community. We're very protective of our community.”
Wilson says the total cost of closing the building had many components.
On June 25, inspecting the building cost approximately $4,704, which included locksmith services, mailings to owners and postings of hearings. The cost of police officers and equipment at Heritage House cost $6,115.
On July 30, condemning the building, trash removal, and boarding up the building cost $12,751. Transportation totaled $1,862. The cost of police officers and equipment cost $10,657.
“Everything that was reported was within our budgetary allowance for the year, so there were no expenditures outside of that,” Wilson said.
Paying to close Heritage House could pay off in other ways as well. Police and firefighters responded to an average of eight calls a day at the complex, so resources will spread more evenly throughout the city now.
Wilson added that the cost to the city does not include the countless hours put in by community partners such as the Greensboro Housing Coalition.
“All the groups that are working on this together have moved at least 66 families,” said Beth McKee-Huger, Greensboro Housing Coalition Executive Director.
Juanita Bradsher was one of the first Heritage House residents placed in a new home.
“I love it, I really do. This is great,” said Bradsher. “I got things that I got now, that I thought I would never have at one point in time. I'm doing pretty good now.”
The Housing Coalition is still helping 12 to 15 displaced families look for homes.