ALBANY — Amtrak trains are rolling through Albany again, after emergency repairs to a decrepit warehouse towering over the tracks.
The city recently performed an inspection on the old Central Warehouse because of the amount of time it had been sitting idle amid a tax foreclosure battle.
When chunks of concrete were found to have flaked off the building onto the elevated right of way that carries trains into northern Albany, Amtrak opted to halt service Friday.
Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan said Monday afternoon that contractors for the city had removed a smokestack and loose concrete from the south-facing facade, near the tracks. They also will reinforce the outer layer of the southern wall to the main structure.
“These actions have abated the threat to public safety and allowed Amtrak to restart train service across the Livingston Avenue rail bridge,” Sheehan said in a news release.
The joint effort of local, state and federal officials removed the immediate threat, she said, but not the standoff with Evan Blum, a New York City-based architectural salvage dealer who has not carried out his plans to put the long-vacant eyesore back into use.
Sheehan urged him to take care of the 11-story hulk, a 95-year-old landmark along Interstate 787 that looks worse with each passing year.
The city will bill Blum for the emergency work to stabilize the building and will not hesitate to take further stops to protect the city, she said.