Is City maneuvering on Divine Lorraine with violations?

The folks over at the Hidden City Daily posted a photo of a Department of Licenses and Inspections orage Notice of Violation pasted on the Divine Lorraine because the “Entire Building” is “unsafe.”

The standard language of these “unsafe” violations, as Curbed Philly noted, is to correct the violations within 30 days or face demolition. Demolition could occur at any time after 30 days, at the city’s discretion, and would be billed to the owners.

This week’s violations come after a small fire broke out on Tuesday, after which the city (sort of) re-sealed some of the building’s many openings.

It is certainly not the first time the owners have been slapped with building violations – the last (according to my brief search) was in 2009. And, back in December, NewsWorks reported that L&I slapped pink stickers on the building signifying its “blighting influence.” The pink stickers are meant to serve as warning that if no proper doors and windows are installed then property owners are on the hook for up to $300 per opening per day.

The longer these violations remain unresolved, the more the owners will owe the city. These fines, layered on top of the nearly $800,000 back taxes owed, means the city could have more leverage in forcing the owners hand to transfer the building into responsible ownership.

Is this newest violation notice is a maneuver to exert pressure on the building’s ownership group to play ball with the city?

There are a couple of developers eyeing the Divine Lorraine property – I’ve heard Pennrose and EB Realty are interested. So after the administration promised action on the property this year, will we see some real movement? We’re all waiting.

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