Minimal requirements

Hello, I recently purchased a historical building through a non-profit and we plan to use ghost hunting tours to pay for stabilization of the building. We are having problems with the city regarding letting the public access the building. What are the minimum requirements to use the building for small groups to come in and take photos and listen for evps and such. www.savethebowen.com
Original Post
would have to know what building code and edtion you are under

1. classify the occupancy, sounds like an "A"

2. meet required life safety requirements per code adopted

such as exiting, exit signs, emergency lighting, possible panic hardware, possible fire alarm, possible fire sprinkler system, etc.


and that is even if you let one person in and do not charge or even if you take donations.


so with that said what do they want you to do???
So far they asked us to have a structural engineer come in and inspect the building to ensure structure is safe. (Done)

Draw up floor plans showing exit routes and install temporary lighting. (Done)

Show them our plans for the scheduled events and what each of the events entails (done)

This was all required for approval for our Halloween opening and completed prior to meeting with the city on Friday the 17th.

They have now decided that we should also hire an architect to tell us that we need the following:

Temporary Railing (we already agreed to provide)
Exit signs (done)
second entrance and exit (done)

Our problem is we are trying to get this done for Halloween. We are willing to do everything they have asked but the Mayor keeps changing what he wants. He has made it something personal and then hides behind he is doing it for public safety.
so why is the mayor involved??

no building department??

Have him give you a complete list in writing and due dates, that way you can pin him down, and also last resort go to the media and ask them to look into what is going on.
A little pr helps some times.
The building inspector works for a local construction company. It is a small town with population of 6500. The Mayor is playing bigshot, he was elected with 350 votes. He is not happy that an outsider is the one that has chosen to take on the task of trying to save this old building.

They refuse to get us a list of requirements, they want us to hire an architect and him provide them with a list of requirements. The inspector told us pretty much what they expected and we agreed to do each of those things yet they still want us to hire one so we have done that also last Friday late after the meeting at 4:00 pm/. We are juust on such a crunch as far as time and looking for some help from the city rather than more hurddles.
Insurance Carrier knows what we are doing, why would they want to stop us?

It would not surprise me if the State Fire Marshal did not come in because the Mayor has already called the EPA twice and they have been to the property on both occassions. They have not had any problems with us to this point.

The Mayor had said we were burning items from inside the building, the only thing burned outside was brush from our clean-up days, which is per city ordinances. The second complaint to the EPA was regarding barrels in the building, which there are none, they checked both out and found nothing. Why would they think there would be barrels of anything in an old State Hospital?
The property has been vacant since 1973. It has went through several owner that did nothing but scavenge metal and let the building deteriorate. It has been a haven for vandels and teens daring to enter. It is mared with grafetti.

We had a fundraiser and we were expecting 1,000 people, we had 4,500 people show up wanting this building saved. It is even on the city emblem and the police emblem.

Everyone wants it restored just no one wanted to do it. I chose to do it because it was mentioned in the ad I seen that the limestone blocks could be used elsewhere.

The structure is amazing, 20 plus inch exterior walls, and a great gothic look.
We have two developers interested for long term deals. We are just using the ghost tours like the property in Louisville, KY. Waverly Hills. One of the developers wants loft style apartments, the other would have haunted bed and breakfast like the Lemp Mansion in St. Louis.
I know I am late to this party, but the Mayor (or any other city official) cannot request that you do anything that is not in the city ordinance or state law AND the city ordinance must be in accordance with enabling legislation stating what laws they are permitted to enact and enforce.


That said, how did it go for your Holloween ghost tour?
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