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Wedding venue shut down by city; bride out thousands

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Zoning violations doom wedding venue. (Source: KPHO-TV) Zoning violations doom wedding venue. (Source: KPHO-TV)
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PHOENIX (CBS5) -

A bride-to-be says she is out $3,000 after a wedding venue has been shut down due to zoning violations.

Pinnacle Vista Villas in north Phoenix has been cited by the city of Phoenix's Planning and Development Department for not being zoned properly. The site is currently zoned for single-family use. In order to operate commercially, city officials say dust proofing, parking and handicap accessibility upgrades must be made.

"I don't even know if it's a describable thing. I was devastated," said bride-to-be Karsen Kramer when she found out the venue could not be used in its current condition.

Kramer, who lives in Wisconsin but is originally from the Phoenix area, planned to get married at Pinnacle Vista Villa this September. She paid the venue $3,000 to hold the space.

"To me that's a lot of money. That's a lot of my hard-earned dollars. [It's] a lot of my dad's hard-earned dollars," she said in an interview via Skype. 

CBS 5 went to the Pinnacle Vista Villa to try to get answers. The place was empty, but we were able to finally get someone on the phone Monday afternoon.

"We haven't shut our doors yet, even though we have a cease and desist. We are addressing every issue that the city has," said Terry, the person who answered the phone at Pinnacle Vista Villa. He did not give his last name.

"We don't have any weddings in June, July or August and we're starting construction soon," he continued.

"For the folks that are concerned that there isn't going to be a change, will there be refunds issued?" asked CBS 5's Greg Argos.

"Uh, it's a possibility," responded Terry.

Kramer said she does not think she'll ever get a refund. However, she simply wants other people considering booking the venue to know the issues she has gone through.

"I don't know if we're going to get married this year because of it," she said.

Besides posting 'Danger' signs warning people to keep out of this building, the city of Phoenix has also issued civil penalties against the owners of this property.

Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

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