Billboard battle in Ohio City - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Billboard battle in Ohio City

West 25th and Franklin, Cleveland West 25th and Franklin, Cleveland

There is a billboard battle underway in Ohio City. Crews contracted by Clear Channel, the billboard owners, showed up at West 25th and Franklin to start work on the billboard that is in obvious need of repair.

Property owners Neil McCormick and Maria Keckan, however, blocked the crews from the property as they are disputing the repairs the City of Cleveland approved as not sufficient.

When McCormick and Keckan bought the land, they inherited with it, a lease with Clear Channel to operate the billboard, but they believe Clear Channel violated the lease.

"From our point of view they've been evicted, we've started an eviction process through the courts," said McCormick.

The real issue, according to the property owners, is that the land surrounding the billboard is unstable and that a gas line that runs under the billboard is in danger of rupturing if the billboard should fall.  They say, they submitted, to the city, an engineering report that backs those claims and that the city ignored the report when they granted a permit to Clear Channel to simply make structural repairs to the billboard.

"It wasn't due process, due process is they should be looking at the engineering reports, they should be evaluating the safety of the foundation and they're not," said Keckan.

The courts will have the final word.

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