One of Aurora Avenue North's most troublesome motels has shut down, according to the Seattle City Attorney's office.
One of Aurora Avenue North’s most troublesome motels has shut down, according to the Seattle City Attorney’s office.
The Seattle Motor Inn, at 12245 Aurora Ave. N., closed this week, said Ed McKenna, assistant city attorney.
According to King County records, the motel is owned by Limantzakis Properties.
It was being leased to Dean and Jill Inman, a Bothell couple who own the Wallingford Inn, Fremont Inn and the Isabella and Italia motels — low-rent accommodations where rooms go for around $50 a night.
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McKenna said the decision to close was a private matter between the property owner and the Inmans.
However, he added, “we’re appreciative of the property owner in closing this long-problem establishment.”
Attempts to reach the Inmans on Thursday were unsuccessful. The couple’s voice mail box was full, and they did not respond to e-mailed requests for comment.
All of the Inman motels, police say, have been havens for criminal activity. But they considered the Seattle Motor Inn the worst. In 2008, police were called to the property 160 times.
That year, the state Department of Health cited the motel for being filthy and unsafe, and suspended its license.
In August, after numerous complaints from neighbors and a combined 463 police visits to all the Inman motels in 2008, the city filed 152 criminal charges against them for a variety of tax violations. The city and the couple are still negotiating a settlement, McKenna said.
The owner is looking at various options, but hasn’t figured out what to do with the site, he said.
The property will be fenced in, McKenna said.
“We’ll work with police … so it’s not overrun by transients,” he said.
Rob Pierides, owner of nearby Rob’s 125th Street Grill, said he’s “happy that it closed.” He said he’s operated his restaurant for more than 10 years without problems, but trouble started brewing once the Inmans took over the property a few years ago.
“I just want my business back to normal,” he said. “I’m really tired of the riff raff that goes on.”
City officials have been trying to crack down on problem motels for years. On Nov. 30, the City Council voted to make it easier for the city to shut down businesses and residences where there is frequent illegal activity.
Under the new city ordinance, which goes into effect next year, property owners can get in trouble if there are three or more “nuisance activities” within 60 days or seven nuisance activities within a year. Councilmember Tim Burgess, who sponsored the legislation, has said the city needed another tool to deal with the issue.
Sonia Krishnan: 206-515-5546 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Information from The Seattle Times archives is included in this report.