Ghost Ship Warehouse demolition put on hold

Bay Area

The demolition of the Ghost Ship Warehouse in Oakland has been put on hold which one city leader finds puzzling.

The attorney representing the victim’s families tells KRON4 that she wants to put a hold on the sale of the property.

Demolish but do not sell.

That is what the attorney, Mary Alexander, representing the families of the 36-victims of the Ghost Ship Warehouse fire against the owner of the property is asking a judge in the civil lawsuit against the owner of the property.

“We told them we do not want them to be able to sell the property,” says Alexander. “It’s an asset. Their asset that really should be used to compensate the victims. That’s our position on it.”

Alexander says if the property is awarded as compensation to her clients, they could then build a memorial to their loved ones on the site where they died in the fire while attending an illegal musical event.

“It is very important for the families to have a memorial there, a place to go to remember them,” Alexander said.

She says her clients are not opposed to demolishing the building.

The city previously approved a permit for the work.

It has since been put on hold due to a technicality discovered on the permit application, which is news to the council member who represents this district.

“I am surprised! The date wasn’t right or the address? How can that be?” says Noel Gallo. “But anyway we are here today as part of the neighborhood saying tear the building down. Honor those who lost their lives and let’s create something for the young people the future generation.”

Also named as defendants in the civil suit are the City of Oakland, PG&E, Max Harris the person who hosted the event, Derek Almena the person who leased the property and the owner of the auto shop next door who allegedly allowed Ghost Ship to use the auto shop as a source of electricity.

The trial date has been set in Oct. 2019.

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