RIO RANCHO, N.M. (KRQE) – It’s been the scene of multiple fires and dozens of police calls and now Rio Rancho is looking to finally get rid of a longtime nuisance property. The former Jewish Center across from Intel on 528 has been abandoned for years and now the city is planning to clean it up.
A fire earlier this year caused the roof to collapse and the structure to be unsafe. The city of Rio Rancho Police Department, Fire Marshal, and building and code enforcement have all investigated the property from December of last year until now and issued multiple violations to the building owners.
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Even though the owner, Chabad of New Mexico, put up a fence after the second fire, that has not stopped the calls about the problem property. “We were able to discover security camera footage from across the street which did show an individual leaving the scene prior to the fire starting. However, we were never able to determine whether that person was involved in starting the fire or involved at all,” said Ryan Floersheim with Rio Rancho Fire and Rescue earlier this year.
The city of Rio Rancho said the police department has responded to calls for service 47 times from December of last year through October of this year. The calls included suspicious activity, criminal damage, and public nuisances. The city said they contacted the owner numerous times but he has not addressed the ongoing safety and health concerns so the city will look to do something about it at their next council meeting next week.
If Rio Rancho passes the resolution, the property owner will have ten days to clean up the property. If that doesn’t happen, the city will tear down the building and put a lien on the property to recoup the cost of the project.