UPDATE: Social Media Push to Save "Top-O-Rock" House

UPDATE 5/8/14 @ 4:54 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- There is now a social media push to save an iconic home in the South Hills area of Charleston.

A contractor has been hired to tear down the house called "Top-O-Rock" after it was badly damaged by vandals.

A Facebook group called "Save Top-O-Rock" was formed Wednesday. It already has more than 500 members.

Click the link to the right to check out the page.

UPDATE 5/7/14 @ 9:20 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- An iconic and unique home in the South Hills area of Charleston will be torn down soon.

The historic "Top-O-Rock" home was badly damaged by vandals recently.

Henry Elden built the home in the late 1960s, and it has been a hot spot for people who want to see the unique architecture.

Rodney Loftis, who owns a contracting company, said he hopes to know by the beginning of next week when the demolition process will begin.

ORIGINAL STORY 5/6/14 @ 5:56 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A unique and historic home in South Hills, has been hit by vandals and thieves. It's known as "Top-O-Rock".

City officials said the damage makes the property dangerous and neighbors are frustrated by the crimes.

"My father came to Charleston and served as an architect for decades," said Ted Elden.

Elden has many memories of "Top-O-Rock". His father, Henry Elden, built the home in the 1960's.

"He wanted a piece of property overlooking the rivers," Ted Elden said.

Ted Elden also spent more than 35 years working inside the 10,000 square-foot property.

Just a few years ago, it was sold to an area doctor.

At that time, there were discussions about re-purposing the home.

Fast forward to now and there are problems.

"There are broken windows and graffiti everywhere," Elden said. "A whole wall is missing, you could walk out of the second floor and just fall."

Vandals have left their mark and Elden said thieves have ripped out copper piping. "It'll cost a lot more to replace it than they got to sell it," he said.

City building commissioners were shocked to see the home so damaged.

"There'd even been a small fire started inside the building," said Charleston Building Code official, Tony Harmon.

They're expecting fixes before someone gets hurt. "The owner would be in deep trouble if something like that would happen," Harmon said.

But they're also worried about the abandoned building attracting crime. They said they've sent a letter giving the owner 21 days to respond and fix the problems or the case could go to court.

"It's depressing what's happened, but it can all be fixed with money," said Elden.

He estimates it could cost $50,000 to fix the damage. But it's money he said is vital to giving this family treasure some purpose again.

NewsChannel 3 reached out to the owners of "Top-O-Rock" for comment, but our calls were not returned.

City building commissioners said if fixes aren't made to the property, the case would head to municipal court, where the owner could face $500 fines for each violation.

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