Des Plaines takes first step to condemn Polo Inn

  • The Polo Inn motel's days could be numbered, as city-initiated condemnation proceedings began Friday.

      The Polo Inn motel's days could be numbered, as city-initiated condemnation proceedings began Friday. Christopher Placek | Staff Photographer, July 2015

 
 

Des Plaines officials took the first step Friday to demolish a shuttered motel at a prominent corner in town, indicating it could be only a matter of time before the motel meets the wrecking ball.

Attorneys for the city and Byline Bank appeared in court for the first time on the city's request to condemn the Polo Inn at 374 Lee St., next to the original McDonald's at the Five Corners intersection.

"The city intends to proceed as quickly as it can, as soon as it can," said Andrew Fiske, a city attorney, after the brief hearing at the Skokie courthouse.

The shuttered motel, facing condemnation and foreclosure proceedings, has sat boarded up and fenced in since floods severely damaged the two-story, 9,000-square-foot brick building in April 2013. City inspectors have cited the property with building and health code violations since then.

Byline Bank's foreclosure suit against the property owner, Calumet City-based M & M Property Group, could be resolved as early May 17, when a Cook County judge is expected to rule on the bank's request for summary judgment. The bank then intends to put the property up for sale, a Byline Bank attorney said in court Friday.

The city's condemnation case will likely be considered after the foreclosure case is resolved. The next court date for the city's case is set for June 3.

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Tim Maroulis of M & M Property Group appeared in court Friday, asking through a representative for time to get an attorney.

His representative told Judge Thaddeus Machnik that Maroulis and his previous attorney "disagreed on a few things."

But the judge said the city's case against Maroulis will proceed next month -- whether he has an attorney or not.

"It sounds like this is a matter that's been going on for a long time," Machnik said. "The world doesn't stop. If he doesn't have one by next month, he will have to represent himself."

Maroulis and his representative declined to comment outside court Friday.

The building had served as a motel since the 1950s, known for years as the Drury Northwestern Motel, but it was constructed as the first hospital in the Northwest suburbs in 1931.

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