Working to clean up Jensen Beach's old Holiday Inn Oceanside

JENSEN BEACH, Fla. - Bill Michaud loves where he lives off Ocean Drive in Jensen Beach.

The view from his neighborhood beach access point is amazing, but the you can see the remnants of the former Holiday Inn Oceanside.

"There's actually sections of the roof that are being taken, I guess for the metal," said Michaud.

He says he's noticed parties inside of the abandoned hotel, homeless people nearby and graffiti defacing the walls.

"We saw youngsters up top there, four stories up. We wondered about the safety feature," said Michaud, a grandfather himself.

He says that sight prompted an email to Martin County commissioners.

Martin County officials confirm there were problems, but no homeless people.

The building department admits people ripped through the fence, pried down boards and outdoor walls filled with graffiti.

"It wasn't gang-related or anything like that. My summation is that it was kids' stuff," said Michelle Owen, Martin County code enforcement supervisor.

County officials alerted the site's management company, which Michaud says fixed things up within a week.

"Did some rewelding of the doors. Reboarded it. Corrected some of the fence that had been trampled down," listed Owen.

The eyesore won't completely go away anytime soon. Construction on a new project won't start for at least one year.

County officials say the site owners, Jensen Beach, LLC, still have to submit a final site plan and get approval before construction begins.

There were still at least two instances of graffiti on the windows Thursday afternoon. Keeping the site secure could be an ongoing issue.

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