News & Views » Columns

Abandoned Shelter of the Week

If you squint your eyes enough you can almost envision a storybook setting for the house standing silently at 503 Ashland St. in Detroit. Rosebushes still grow along the fence in heavy bloom and the only real signs of neglect and abandonment come from the blatantly boarded windows, crumbling porch, thick overgrowth of a now-wild yard and an appraised price of $6,000.

Maybe this house does have a little more class than the others. After all, it does border right on Grosse Pointe Park. Manal Zakar, who works next door to the house at Manistique Market, told the Abandoned Structure Squad (ASS to our friends) even though she thinks the owner died a few months ago, she still can’t understand why someone doesn’t do something about fixing it and the rest of the rundown buildings in the neighborhood. “They fix the ones down the block on the other side,” Zakar said. “I don’t know how they don’t do anything about these. That one has been abandoned for five or six years.” Zakar said the only good thing that has happened to the house was when the doors and windows were boarded up.

Editor’s note: If you know of an abandoned home you would like to see featured in this spot, send a photo and pertinent information to News Hits, c/o Metro Times, 733 St. Antoine, Detroit, MI 48226 (or e-mail

Check out all of our Abandoned Shelters of the Week

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Detroit Metro Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Metro Times Press Club for as little as $5 a month.