A Second Building On 500 Block Of Race Street Declared Structura - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

A Second Building On 500 Block Of Race Street Declared Structurally Weak

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507 Race Street on the right (Photo:WBOC) 507 Race Street on the right (Photo:WBOC)

CAMBRIDGE, Md.-  The much talked about Hearn Building is covered with scaffolding, and the city and county are trying their best to save it after that wall collapsed almost a year ago.  But now there's a new problem.  The building next to it has now been declared structurally unsound as well.

Much of Delmarva was introduced to 507 Race Street four years ago this December, when the apartment building was set on fire by an arsonist.  For four years, the building has been without a roof, and the news that it is now structurally compromised is not a surprise to business owners like Janetta Milligan across the street.

"I'm not surprised.  It's common sense when a building has been sitting without a roof for so many years.  It's not a surprise," said Milligan.

A group called Historic Cambridge Inc. has plans to save the building.  They've owned it for the past few years since the fire.  Sergio Martinez's business is just down an alley from the buildings.  He thinks the time for saving them is over.

"Literally there's not much to tear down.  You can look at it and you can see right through.  Honestly I think they should be torn down a build something that the community could benefit from.  Not just the community, but the county, state, and the city," said Martinez.

Some still see potential for the buildings, but say it needs to be acted on fast.

"I said it a while ago and I'll say it again.  I feel like whatever they are going to do, they need to get it done as soon as possible.  It's definitely an eyesore and it doesn't make this block of Race Street look good at all.  They are calling for help.  They are definitely calling for help or the end of their cycle," said Milligan.

We were able to get in contact with Historic Cambridge Inc., the group that owns 507 Race Street.  They say they are acting as stewards of the building, holding onto it until a new buyer comes along with a plan to restore it.  So far, they say negotiations have been somewhat drawn out because of the neighboring Hearn Building.  The sales contract on that building has reportedly been signed, which has Historic Cambridge Inc. hopeful about the future of 507 Race.

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