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We hear that the “no roof” look is in this summer. You might think that, anyway, after seeing the house at 13856 Maine St., between McNichols and Seven Mile roads. With boarded-up windows, a broken porch and wide-open spaces where the roof should be, it’s one of many blots on this East Side street, which otherwise features well-maintained homes with nicely planted yards on the west side of the street and dilapidated wrecks on the east.

The nice folks at Detroit’s Buildings and Safety Engineering Department say there hasn’t been a demolition ordered for the structure, but acknowledged receiving complaints.

Neighbor Patricia Elam says the house has been in its current condition for some time. Vandals firebombed it, she says, causing much of the current damage.

Still, it looks better than it did last week, Elam says. City workers recently cut the grass that Elam says was waist-high, harboring rats and other wildlife.

Elam says she’s complained to the city that the house was dangerous. She says they agreed, but that neither the city nor the property owners have taken any action.

“Why don’t the owners do something about it?” she says.

One elderly Maine Street resident sums up the problem plainly. “It looks like shit,” she says. “They need to come out here, and tear down all this shit.”

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

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