UPDATE:

 The planning commission unanimously voted to give the owners 10 days to bring the motel into compliance. If it is not in compliance after 10 days, the motel will not re-open.

ORIGINAL STORY:

GREENWOOD, Ind. — The front lobby doors are locked, and a sign on the window indicates the Red Carpet Inn and Fanta Suites at 1117 East Main Street in Greenwood is closed.

The Greenwood Plan Commission gave the owner until 7:25 p.m. Wednesday to clear out.

”I honestly believe the property is beyond the place that they can bring it back up to an operable standard,” said Mayor Mark Myers. “You’ve got sewage leaks that are leaking out into the bedrooms and into the hallways. You’re talking millions of dollars of repair to a facility that would be better off to scrap it and start over.”

Myers accompanied inspectors in mid-September on a return visit after the owner ignored orders in June of 2021 to clean up the property.

”It’s one of the most disgusting places I’ve been in in years,” said Myers, a former policeman. “Cockroaches, bed bugs, trash, garbage, mold, ceiling tiles falling in, air conditioning units not working, electrical plugs laying outside the walls, TVs ripped off of the walls. It was in horrible disrepair.”

Inspectors found 188 violations, and public safety first responders racked up more than one hundred calls to the motel in the last year.

”We have had numerous overdose calls when we were there,” said Myers. “We have had used bottles of Narcan laying on the floor in various apartments. We found weapons. We found narcotics.”

Chris and Angie Coffey were checking out of the Fanta Suites wing of the motel after returning to the place where they spent their honeymoon.

”It’s disheartening to hear about, but also if you would’ve warned me yesterday I would’ve had some second thoughts about staying yesterday possibly,” said Chris.

Angie said she returned to the hotel to find something she lost in 1992.

”It’s also kind of sad because I always had thoughts that somehow my class ring would come back 30 years later, on our honeymoon it disappeared. I always thought one day we would come back and find it, but I don’t know now, I guess that’s not gonna be an opportunity either.”

Myers said the city will open negotiations with the owner to purchase the property so it may be demolished to make way for new development.

”We are talking about the gateway to Greenwood, and we want people to see something beautiful, something respectful, something that’s encouraging and inviting to come into the city,” he said. ”We’ve had a lot of hoteliers in the past talk to us about other locations. I think this would be a perfect location for a nice four-star hotel and conference center.”

Myers said now that Greenwood inspectors and attorneys have developed a process for investigating, citing and shutting down troubled motels, the city will survey other locations that have been the subject of similar complaints.

An attorney representing the owner refused comment on the closure agreement he negotiated with the city.