Crumbling Pakistan owned building in Washington downgraded

Washington, May 5 : The property classification of a Pakistan Embassy-owned historic building has been downgraded by the government of the District of Columbia in the US for its deteriorated condition. The old, and now crumbling building owned by the Pakistani government, has been up for sale for the past few months, The News reported. The downgrade, however, inevitably increased taxes on the property's assessed value as well. The local authorities have changed the class status of the property, which is located at Washington's famous R Street. In the past, the building was a chancery and put up for auction late last year. The complete bidding process was later cancelled by Pakistani authorities. The highest bidder had offered $6.8 million for the property, which sits in the heart of the city. Pre-auction evaluation of the building on "as is" basis was set for $4.5 million as a benchmark. The building has been unoccupied for well over a decade. Its diplomatic status was also revoked in 2018, which made it liable to pay taxes to the local government. The District of Columbia's official documents revealed that the Pakistani government did not get any tax relief on that property from 2018 onwards. The building was first categorised as Class 2 because it was commercial in 2018 and 2019. It was then placed into Class 3 because it was vacant for three years from 2020 to 2022. Late last month, the building's property classification was further downgraded and it has now been designated as Class 4 for its deteriorated condition, The News reported. The local government's Department of Buildings determines a building as blighted if it's unsafe, unsanitary, or otherwise determined to threaten the health, safety, or general welfare of the community. /IANS


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