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Demolition coming for Midtown mansion that has 'donned many hats' since construction in late 1800s

Apartments to replace Allen-Sullivan house, which remained vacant for decades
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Posted at 2:52 PM, Jun 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-22 09:37:39-04

CLEVELAND — Crews continued prep work ahead of demolition scheduled to take place at the site of the old Allen-Sullivan house along Euclid Avenue in Cleveland’s Midtown neighborhood.

Earlier this month, city leaders gave the green light for the building to come down and make room for 160 new apartments.

“The exterior and interior are in pretty rough shape,” explained John Wagner with City Architecture at the time. “The inside of the house is in tough shape, there are no systems, no HVAC, no electrical, no plumbing. it has been gutted.”

It comes after months of trying to find someone who could move, restore and reclaim the home, which has sat empty for about the last two decades.

The Allen-Sullivan house was originally built in the late 1800s, and while it has stood the test of time, it is not designated as a landmark and does not sit along Millionaire’s Row.

During that City Planning Commission, experts estimated it would cost about $2.5 million to renovate the home, on top of about $500,000 to move the structure away from the current property.

According to documents within the Cleveland Public Library’s digital photograph collection, the Allen-Sullivan house reinvented itself over the years as everything from a fraternal headquarters to a research building to a party center.

“It has donned many hats,” said Angelina Bair with Bair Consulting Services.

After being unsuccessful in saving the house, Bair now finds herself part of the team documenting its history before it's gone.

“It’s sad,” she said. “I wish it could’ve been restored, could have been saved.”

Demolition crews told News 5 they’re not sure when the building will finally come down as they wait for the proper permits to clear.