Wheeling City Council talked about the demolition of Ernie’s Cork and Bottle Tuesday night.
The one-time popular destination in downtown Wheeling remained shuttered for several years and the building became dilapidated.
The Ad-Hoc Committee for Workforce Housing cited it as an example of how the city needs to revamp its strategy for vacant buildings.
Co-chair Susan Hagan said, “That building sat there for so long empty, with a bad roof, bad everything. And it just got dilapidated to the point where it had to be torn down. If there was a way for the city to enforce with our property owners, taking care of those buildings, even if it’s just that ‘they have a plan’ and they’re enforce. You know, fix their roofs, fix everything so that’s it’s not a leaking abandoned building that is going to deteriorate over time.”
The Workforce Housing committee’s final report suggests Wheeling should create a “Blighted and Vacant Property Committee” to address code issues of that nature, saying their studies suggest Frederick, Maryland represents one example.