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Dupe-plex

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Nothing perplexes the Abandoned Shelter Squad (ASS) more than a decayed duplex. The burned-out two-banger at 1239-1243 Beech, located directly behind the Lager House on Michigan Avenue, exemplifies the slow response of the city to demolish — or at the very least board up — abandoned houses that present a hazard. A Lager House co-owner says the place has been vacant for three years. “It’s a shame that it has to sit there like that for so long and in such an old neighborhood,” he says, adding that the building was set ablaze a week before Devil’s Night last year. He and others have talked to City Council numerous times. “They keep promising to board it up, but they never do,” he says. ASS informants suspect the building is a sanctuary where purse-snatchers and other wastes of DNA divvy up their loot. Walls are spray-painted with such chilling messages as “Die, Fashion Punks.” OK, ASS has to admit liking the gist of that. Perhaps some hardy soul could buy and fix up the wreck — the city says it’s worth $3,750. Special amenity: The Lager’s $1 beer night.

Tricia Woolfenden is an editorial intern at Metro Times. E-mail letters@metrotimes.com

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