Warren Officials Improve Mobile Home Parks – Macomb Daily
Several homes in the Landmark Estates mobile home park in Warren have been removed and it has been decided that more will be removed as part of a major renovation project. (Photo by Susan Smiley)
Drive through the Warren’s Landmark Estates mobile park on Dequindre Road and you will notice many empty lots and many existing homes which have been marked to reduce disturbance.
It’s all part of an effort to revitalize the city’s dilapidated mobile home parks, according to Warren construction manager James Cummins.
He said there are 11 manufactured or mobile home parks in Warren, four of which are already in development, and the remaining seven are slated for future improvements. The Shadyline mobile home community on Capitol Avenue near Nine Mile Road and Dequindre is currently under renovation.
Last year, the Warren City Council passed a resolution introduced by General Councilwoman Angela Rognesses directing the city’s legal department to begin a civil nuisance lawsuit in Macomb County Court against Open Door Capital, LLC, the company that purchased Landmark Estates in August 2021 Open Door Capital owns Ltd. also owns the Twin Pines mobile park at 11 Mile Road in Warren.
Open Management, a property management firm that specializes in managing manufactured residential communities, has been brought in to manage both the day-to-day operations of the community, as well as the large-scale projects slated for implementation over the next few years.
Instead of litigation, the Landmark Estates’ owners entered into an agreement with the City of Warren outlining detailed improvements to be made in the park including upgrading and replacing sewer lines; plumbing improvements; rodent control; Eliminate “camping” units. Add landscaping.
Cecile St. Pierre, an assistant city attorney, said improvements to the water and sewage systems, including the replacement of a water pump, had already been made as well as the removal of dangerous and abandoned homes in the park.
According to Landmark Estates documents, 34 new units will be added as the old abandoned mobile homes have been removed. Five more homes are slated to be removed, with four news homes to take their place.
“The city will inspect rental homes in the park according to the city’s rent code,” Cummins said.
The building department will also issue mitigation or condemnation notices if necessary, according to city ordinance.
“We recognize that there is an urgent need for affordable housing in the city,” Cummins said. “We’re not trying to get rid of that, we’re trying to improve the quality of low-cost housing for residents.”
David Denmark, a resident of the Landmark Estates and campaigner for mobile home park improvements, acknowledges that some improvements have been made to Warren Park, but for many residents the conditions are still far less than ideal.
“They’ve worked on the water and they’re still tearing up the houses, but about half of the park still has problems with water pressure,” Denmark said.Denmark said he sued Landmark Estates last year, and since that time, there have been efforts to evict him from his garden home. It was unacceptable, he said, that Open Door, LLC purchased the park in August 2021 and that it took until January 2023 for the out-of-state property owners and managers to get to Michigan and reach an agreement with the city. He is also angry that the suit approved by the city council was never filed.
He said his experience led him to work with other activists, including Paul Terranova, an organizer of the Midwest Community of Manufactured Home Work, to change legislation to give residents of mobile home parks more rights.
$500,000 has already been invested in Landmark Estates for major upgrades to water and sewer lines, tree trimming, road repairs and resealing, and the eradication of rodents and pests that plagued the park when the property was purchased, said a statement from Michelle Oplett, Vice President of Open Management. .
“We have more projects in the pipeline as well,” said Oplett. Homes that were vacant on the property are either being renovated or removed, giving the opportunity to build new and beautiful homes.
“This will increase the quality of the community as a whole, and we are excited about the next phase of ongoing improvements at Landmark Estates.”