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City sends letter to Northland Mall owner to address more concerns

WORTHINGTON — The city of Worthington has sent another certified letter to the owner of the Northland Mall.

According to the letter provided by city officials, a multitude of unsafe conditions were outlined.

A plan of action is required to community development staff within 30 days of the receipt of the letter, which was dated March 10.

“Failure to comply with this order will result with the matter being forwarded to the City Attorney and the city council for action as authorized under Minnesota State Statute Section 463,” the letter read. That statute outlines hazardous or substandard buildings.

Among those items mentioned, the building has suffered from a lack of maintenance resulting in roofing membrane failures and water intrusion. The roof coverings are saturated with water. The suspended ceiling systems are compromised and it is unknown how much structural damage has occurred from water intrusion. The HVAC systems are non-functional. According to the letter, the lack of ventilation, high levels of humidity and bulk water entering the building may be creating an unhealthy environment.

“This list is not intended nor shall it be considered all inclusive of unsafe conditions in the building, additional study may reveal additional problems,” the letter said.

This is not the first go-round with the owner, listed as Mike Kohen of Northland Mall Realty Management LLC.

The former K-Mart building, which is connected to the mall, has already been declared a hazardous building by the city council. During a January council meeting, the council approved a contract with Wenzel Engineering to assess the building. The cost will be $19,722 for the company to provide cost assessment and recommendations on the decision to repair or demolish the structure.