The old Ralph and Kacoo's building in Ridgeland stands in disrepair.
The old Ralph and Kacoo's building in Ridgeland stands in disrepair.

RIDGELAND — The old Ralph and Kacoo’s property on County Line Road was ordered cleaned up this week.

Following a public hearing, alderman voted unanimously to give the owner of the two parcels of land to have equipment on-site ready to clear the property within 60 days. 

The vote was unanimous, 6-0, with Ward 2 Alderman Chuck Gautier calling in through speakerphone and Ward 4 Alderman Brian Ramsey absent.

Community Development Director Alan Hart said that a representative for the development was not present because a family member was having surgery, though they had communicated.

Hart said that he was hesitant to recommend that the city adjudicate the property because the maximum amount of money that could be assessed to a property owner for a cleaning was $15,000 per parcel and this property, which consisted of more than one parcel, would be well above that because of specialized asbestos removal services that would be involved. He said the city could consider a partial demolition, though he advised against it.

Mayor Gene McGee agreed, saying that a partial demolition could create another public hazard.

“I think we need to give the owner a time frame to have it cleaned,” McGee said.

Ward 3 Alderman Kevin holder recommended giving the owner 60 days to at least get equipment on-site.

“It has been there for quite a while and I am ready to see it gone,” Holder said, adding that he did not want to see this matter left with no action taken.

Hart said that 60 days was perfectly reasonable for them to demonstrate that they had started, but the unpredictable weather that is common this time of year made it an unreasonable time frame to have the building removed.

“I feel confident that he can have equipment on-site and have this project started within 60 days,” Hart said.

Ralph and Kacoo’s was a Cajun seafood restaurant that closed nearly 20 years ago. There are currently four locations in Mobile, Ala., Baton Rouge, La., Bossier City, La., and Lufkin, Texas.

Officials have suggested the clearing of the property will pave the way for a proposed Hardee’s restaurant.