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Berkeley Inches Closer to Laying the Smack Down on Ken Sarachan

As we've mentioned before, there's a nasty, rat-infested vacant lot on the corner of Telegraph Avenue and Haste Street in Berkeley that's causing serious problems for the neighborhood. The city of Berkeley has had enough, and is considering filing a lawsuit against Ken Sarachan, the owner of the lot, to collect $500,000 in city liens on the property. What's odd, Sarachan also owns several other prominent properties on Telegraph Avenue, including Rasputin Records, Blondie's Pizza and the old Cody's Building. So, why does Sarachan not take care of or develop what's considered a prime piece of real estate tail? One might suggest that it's because the lot is directly across from Amoeba Records, which is direct competition for Rasputin Records. Sarachan, however, says it's because Berkeley's regulations and quota restrictions made it too burdensome for new projects to begin.
· Unwanted Neighbors [Curbed SF]
· City to consider suing owner of blighted Telegraph Ave. lot [Berkeleyside]
· Ordinance Would Seek Upkeep for Vacant Lots [The Daily Californian]
[photo via CalEJ.org]