Connellsville officials tell county to bring down WCVI building
Connellsville officials will wait no longer for the demolition or rehabilitation of the former WCVI building at 131-139 E. Crawford Ave.
Councilman Gregory Ritch said the city sent a letter to Fayette County seeking demolition of the building within 30 days.
The city's action comes after officials learned that Leighton Simpson of New Jersey had submitted a bid for the property and structure to the county. The bid would take about 100 days to be awarded. Notice was sent to Simpson requiring work to be done.
Tom Currey, Connellsville's zoning and code enforcement officer and health officer, said the letter was sent by mail on June 13 to the three county commissioners and the chief clerk allowing 30 days to demolish the structure. A copy of the engineering report was also sent.
“We've been down this road before,” Ritch said. “We had to do something. Our No. 1 concern is safety.”
“While we all in the city would hope the new owner of the WCVI building has hundreds of thousands of dollars to put into the building, the reality is the building is far from saving,” Connellsville Mayor Greg Lincoln said. “And it's time for the county to accept responsibility of demolishing their very unsafe building. I hope they follow through and let the city know when they plan on taking care of the WCVI building once and for all.”
Councilman Aaron Zolbrod agreed, hoping the building would be down soon.
“The No. 1 point is safety for our volunteer firemen, police officers and residents,” said Zolbrod, adding the problem might not exist if the city had an abandoned or vacant building ordinance 15 years ago.
Fayette County Commission Chairman Al Ambrosini said the county approved the sale to Simpson at the commissioner's meeting on Tuesday. However, Ambrosini said he would like to contact Simpson to find out what his intentions might be.
“The county does not have the money to demolish the building,” Ambrosini said. “If someone gave us $1 million tomorrow, we would not have enough to take care of all of the buildings (needing attention) in the county. If they gave us $10 million, we still would not have enough.”
Ambrosini said he would sit down with the county solicitor to see what the options might be, especially considering the commissioners had approved the sale to Simpson for $200.
“I'm just not sure,” Ambrosini said. “I have no way of knowing who bought the building.”
He said he was hoping Simpson would demolish the structure and build or sell the property. He agreed dealing with the unsafe structure is a matter of public safety.
Karl Polacek is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at email@example.com or 724-626-3538.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Connellsville Area School District rethinks grading
- Connellsville Area Senior High School students work on mural in East Park
- Fayette man challenges charges filed by Connellsville police officer, now under indictment
- Lineup set for Lions Club’s annual Kids Fest in Connellsville
- Army unit reunites to honor fallen comrade in Uniontown
- Connellsville board set to tackle budget
- Connellsville Area’s $4.8M budget gap raises specter of layoffs
- Police in Fayette County seek witnesses to motorcycle accident