The more questions we ask about the historic Third Precinct Police Station, the less we seem to know. Built in 1896, the building is just beyond Eastern Market on Gratiot. One might take the huge "HISTORIC BUILDING FOR SALE" banner as an encouraging sign that the owner wants to sell, but our phone calls have yielded only additional mysteries, and the overall impression that the owner has some big secrets (or possibly a jacuzzi) hidden within.
When we first called in early 2012, an eerie, robotic-sounding voice answered the phone. Identifying himself only as the building owner's "associate," the man divulged little beyond the $750K asking price. For an entertaining read, definitely check out our first encounter with him.
After waiting more than a year, we gave it another try last week. Guess who answered the phone? Mr. Associate told us that the list price has plummeted to $168K. Just like the first time, there wasn't much info to be had. Here are some conversational highlights:
Q: Is the plumbing and electrical still intact?
A: "Yes, absolutely. Air conditioning. Everything."
Q: What's the building used for now? What's the setup inside?
A: "Whatever you want it to be." (long pause) "We have jacuzzi."
Q: Are there any interesting or historical facts about the building?
A: "It isn't my building."
Seeking more details, we turned to the professionals. According to the commercial listing service LoopNet, this property has been on the market since 2004, when it was asking $1.35M.
The strange lack of information continues with the building's ownership (listed only as "Sunny") and the building's size, which fluctuates between 15,000-45,000 square feet, depending on what year the listing was rewritten.
So. If you've ever been inside this place, or have any idea what's going on with the ownership, please connect with us via the tipline. Sunny, if you're out there somewhere, we recommend hiring a new associate.
UPDATE (10/28/13): A man claiming to represent the property now tells us, via email, that the building's asking price is currently $868,000, not $168,000.