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Ferndale Council to Vote Monday on Motorama Motel’s License

waterworkTOP_whitePolice Recommend Not dinos02sidelogo3Renewing Motorama License, Council to Vote Monday

(Crystal A. Proxmire, Feb. 4, 2016)


Ferndale, MI – The Motorama Motel could lose its business operating license on Monday depending on a vote of the Ferndale City Council. The Ferndale Police have submitted a report to council outlining the numerous calls for service at the hotel located on 8 Mile and Woodward, along with a recommendation to deny the license.

Police reports came to public attention in November and December when the oc115 made a ctechadFreedom of Information Act request and published summaries of the reports at the motel. Three years’ worth of reports reveal multiple drug over-doses, arrests for cocaine and heroin, and situations of robbery and assaults. Since 2013 the Ferndale Police have responded to 281 calls for service at the Motorama. In April a man died on a lawn on Fielding Street after buying heroin from a room at the motel.

According to the recommendation in the City Council packet, “The Police Chief’s investigation of the Motorama Hotel has disclosed numerous police contacts resulting in numerous criminal investigations and prosecutions, along with unsatisfactory inspection reports of the premises from the Building Inspector and Fire Marshal identifying numerous code violations… The operation of the Motorama Hotel, based on the Police Chief’s investigation, is a public nuisance which is unreasonably taxing the resources of the Ferndale Police Department and is harmful to the safety and general welfare of the City of Ferndale. The Schrock2015_ad_twocitiesPolice Chief recommends the license be denied.”

The fire inspection report noted that many of the rooms did not have smoke alarms. Additionally six rooms had tenants using unauthorized cooking devices such as hot plates, grills and toaster ovens. Holes in the walls and ceilings were not properly repaired. The second floor above the owner’s apartment had an improper amount of combustible materials stored in it. A storage room was found to have gas cans improperly stored. The laundry room did not have a carbon monoxide detector. Other violations included obvious marijuana use (smoking in hotels is illegal in Michigan), an electrical panel not properly secured, and the use of an extension cord to run appliances. According to the report violations needed to be taken care of immediately, but that a follow up inspection could be conducted after Jan. 14, 2016 for the smoke alarms and Feb. 12, 2016 for all other violations.

Red Door Realty Ad _own_your_dreamThe building inspection report listed many violations as well, including non-functioning exhaust fans, damaged sinks, toilets, bathtubs and showers, missing screens, missing electrical plate covers, improper plumbing, exposed wires, missing light fixtures and more. Room 115 had been damaged in a fire with no cleanup or repair done since October.

Ferndale City Council will take the matter up on Feb. 8, where owner Phil Patel will have the opportunity to speak, as will the public.

When asked how he feels about the renewal, Ferndale Mayor Dave Coulter said “The level of illegal activity and unsafe conditions described in the report is unacceptable and, frankly, outrageous. This doesn’t represent who we are as a city, and it insults all the great businesses who help create the positive community image we enjoy. I agree with the police and fire chiefs sidebar basethat these conditions cannot be allowed to continue.”

A relative at the motel said that Patel is out of the country and could not be reached for comment.

To read the police report summaries, go to:


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