Original owner of crumbling Davis Islands mansion says it's too - WFLA News Channel 8

Original owner of crumbling Davis Islands mansion says it's too late

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Original owner comes forward and remembers building the mansion Original owner comes forward and remembers building the mansion
Norman Bond built the DI mansion.  He says its time for it to come down Norman Bond built the DI mansion. He says its time for it to come down
TAMPA, FL (WFLA) -

Norman Bond stood outside of the Davis Islands mansion on Severn Avenue and smiled.  With all the publicity about this mansion in the news Monday, Bond felt the need to come see it for himself.  After all, he was the one who had built this dream house decades ago.

In the 1970's,  Bond says he made his money early in life by renting televisions.

Growing up in South Tampa, he said he always wanted to live on Davis Islands, so when he starting making money, Bond had the house on Severn Avenue built in 1971.

Bond says when he talked with the architect, he told him he just wanted a one bedroom home.  That was always the talk on Davis Islands in the day.  The big mansion had only one bedroom.

"If you have more than one bedroom and have a party, people just pass out in your rooms and end up staying." said Bond.

In the 1970's, Bond's house was a party pad.  He says the Baltimore Colts came over for a New Years Eve party one year.

"They were supposed to play a game the next day and some were so drunk they couldn't make it down the stairs," said Bond.

Since that time, the home on Severn Avenue on Davis Islands has fallen into disrepair.

City of Tampa Code Enforcement officers have issued an order to demolish the structure, but the current owners are fighting back.

Property records show the home belongs to John and Mary Francis Perez.

When contacted by phone, Mrs. Perez would only say, " Our perspective will come out at the hearing."

Then she hung up.

Tampa City Councilman Harry Cohen says city staff has looked at the home and they all seem to be in agreement that the house should be torn down.

Cohen says, "The city's position is that the house should come down. The fire marshal, code enforcement, the building department, they're all in agreement, they believe that it's time for the house to actually be destroyed. That will be a finding of fact, that will be made by the magistrate and then either side is free to appeal that decision to circuit court."

Cohen says the current homeowner must be given due process to prove their case.

He says that's why a hearing that had been scheduled for October 23, has now been delayed.

Cohen says the postponement was granted to allow time for an attorney hired by the current homeowner to get up to speed on the issue.

Cohen says he understands the delay can be frustrating for people who live near the house on Severn Avenue.

Neighbors say they want to see the home demolished.

In addition to crumbling walls inside and outside the home, neighbors say there are rats and other vermin living in the home.

Norman Bond says the home was built with a flat roof and had a drainage system than ran through the middle of the home.

Bond says if the drainage was not maintained he believes the house is rotting from the inside.

Bond says, it's too late to save the building and he agrees with neighbors that it's time to remember the good times, and tear the building down.

Related Content: Davis Islands mansion turned eyesore slated for demolition

The appeal hearing with the City of Tampa in November 6th in the 3rd floor of Old City Hall.  Neighbors are being encouraged by the Davis Islands Civic Association to attend and share their feelings with city officials.

 Don’t miss out on the day’s top Facebook conversations http://on.fb.me/18y81Cl

 

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