Eye sore of the week

By Allan I. Ross

Property:  3512 S. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Lansing

Owner: MLK Property LLC

Assessed value: $979,600

Owner says: Unable to be reached for comment

Architecture critic Amanda Harrell-Seyburn says: Car dealerships, like gas stations, arrived on the architecture scene for the first time in the last century. Dealerships like this one with flat roofs and extensive parking are hard to re-imagine as anything but. Yet dealerships could, by design, transform into substations for pumping alternative energy back onto the grid. It’s not unheard of for large parking lots to be converted as a home for wind turbines and solar arrays.

The former Metro Ford dealership on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard is going downhill quickly. The building was a featured Eyesore of the Week four years ago, but continued neglect by the building’s owners has given way to nature and vandals. 

In the last several months, graffiti, runaway plant growth and a shattered showroom window have sunk the longtime eyesore to even lower levels of social blight. Specifically, that giant, gaping maw of a former window seems like an open invitation to both trespassers and wildlife. 

A supervisor at the Tim Hortons next door, who asked that her name not be used, said she’s not concerned about problems at the building, though, because “the cops hang out here all the time.” Score one for fortuitous coffee and doughnut shop location.

“Eyesore of the Week” is our look at some of the seedier properties in Lansing. It rotates each week with Eye Candy of the Week. If you have a suggestion, please e-mail eye@lansingcitypulse.com or call Andy Balaskovitz at 999-5064.