Driving by the beseiged Liberty Warehouse this afternoon, I was pleased to see some new signage going up on the building.
Last time someone stuck a sign on the building, it was a "CONDEMNED" sticker in light of roof damage back in May -- damage that led several non-profits paying below-market rates to have to find new digs for their organizations.
Over a contentious few weeks, Greenfire Development faced condemnation proceedings based on leak complaints by at least one tenant; saw (a few weeks later) an actual partial collapse of the roof after a rain storm; found itself in the center of the bulls-eye for public criticism over the building's condition; and pressed back on accusers, noting it has rehabbed and brought many once-dilapidated buildings back to productive use, and saying that the Liberty's collapse was related to other roof problems that weren't apparent from visible inspection.
A demolition-by-neglect hearing set for June, though, was cancelled after Greenfire pledged to restore the building's condition.
Today's signage? Banners from BELFOR Property Restoration, which bills itself "the worldwide leader in disaster recovery and property restoration."
BELFOR -- whose portfolio includes a range of residential and commercial services, including drying and dehumidification, water and storm damage remediation, mold remediation, and environmental services -- has offices in Raleigh, Charlotte, Winston-Salem, Hickory and Wilmington.
BELFOR is the leading global restoration and repair company. We analyze and restore fire, water and storm damage of every kind and on any scale. We enable business and private customers to overcome the consequences of damage quickly, smoothly and cost-effectively. We invest every effort in minimizing business interruptions and getting things back to normal. We draw on more than 35 years of experience, use the latest technical equipment and employ highly qualified people. After all, our assignment is more than just a job: the survival of your assets is at stake.
For Durham, this seems to be a sign that the survival of one of the community's historic assets may be moving at least a bit forward.