Albion pushes for removal of ‘dangerous’ sandstone building

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 11 April 2013 at 12:00 am

Photos by Tom Rivers – Village of Albion officials filed a court order on Wednesday for Dan Dunn, owner of sandstone building at 125 Liberty St., to take the structure down within 30 days.

The sandstone building from 1840 was once a base for constructing carriages.

The 5,000-square-foot building has a collapsed roof and floors.

ALBION – A sandstone building that has been a dominant presence along the Erie Canal since 1840 needs to come down in 30 days, Village Code Enforcement Officer Ron Vendetti told the owner on Wednesday.

Vendetti said the building, once used to manufacture carriages more than a century ago, is a “dangerous building.” The 5,000-square-foot building was last used as a furniture warehouse about a half century ago. The roof and floors have collapsed in the building, which is missing several windows.

Dan Dunn, owner of a salvaging company in Medina, owns the building. He said he is working to bring down the dilapidated structure. He will try to preserve and resell as much of the stone as possible.

“I’ll try to get it done and make everybody happy,” Dunn said.

The Albion Historic Preservation Commission approved a hardship case for Dunn in January and voted in support of the building’s demolition.

Dunn said he has been delayed because of the costs of asbestos removal. Certified asbestos removal contractors say removing that from the roof and floors will cost $16,000 to $20,000. When he purchased the building last year, he thought he could remove the asbestos himself.

Dunn has made a career out of reclaiming materials that would otherwise be trashed. He didn’t want to see that fate for the old building, which borders the Erie Canal at 125 Liberty St.

“These days they’re so quick to demolish things and send them to a landfill,” he said. “I like that stone and that building has an awful lot of history.”

Dunn said he will try to recoup as much of the demolition and asbestos removal costs as possible with the resale of the sandstone. He doubts he’ll be able to recover his costs. Village officials say the land at 125 Liberty St. is coveted by the state Canal Corporation, which has a complex next door.

Mayor Dean Theodorakos said he would like to see the land be redeveloped.

“It’s great location along the Erie Canal,” Theodorakos said.