SCHENECTADY — Eleven blighted buildings are set to come down this fall in the Mont Pleasant neighborhood, including two that will clear the way for a new library.
The Capital Region Land Bank approved bids Tuesday night for the 11 demolitions. Among the buildings slated to be torn down is the former Chubby’s Pizza, a shop that generated hundreds of police calls each year when it was open.
Land Bank-owned properties on Third, Fourth, Sixth and Cutler avenues are also on the demolition list, as are buildings on Bridge and Crane streets.
“These houses are blight, they’re often a safety issue and it’s the broken-windows theory,” Mont Pleasant Neighborhood Association President Pat Smith said. “If we get those down and clean up those properties, it will start to make the neighborhood feel a little bit better.”
The demolition of 1032 and 1036 Crane St. are of particular importance, as they will be replaced by a new, $2.37 million public library.
The project was announced in March but was unable to formally move forward until the county acquired the Chubby’s Pizza parcel. Chubby’s had been closed since November, but a new applicant sought to open a convenience store at the property.
The city’s Industrial Development Agency already owned the property at 1036 Crane St. and, in July, secured the Chubby's site at 1032 Crane St. for $150,000.
Both buildings will be demolished in the fall, and construction of the new branch is expected to begin in spring 2018. Once work is complete, the current library will be torn down to make way for additional library parking.
The current library is small and lacks many of the resources offered at the city’s other libraries. The new building will encompass 5,000 square feet and will feature expanded hours, community meeting rooms and literacy programming geared toward the neighborhood’s needs.
Four companies submitted bids to do the demolition work, with the winning submission coming from Albany-based Dan’s Hauling & Demo Inc., with a bid of $348,000 for all 11 buildings.
The work is part of a broader effort by the Land Bank to focus on distressed properties in Mont Pleasant. Crews took down a crumbling office at 720 Crane St. in May as part of an expansion of Orchard Park.
The 11 buildings to be demolished in the fall are:
- 1402 Sixth Ave.
- 1313 Sixth Ave.
- 802 Bridge St.
- 910 Bridge St.
- 929-31 Cutler Ave.
- 1118 Fourth Ave.
- 1222-24 Third Ave.
- 856 Crane St.
- 929 Crane St.
- 1032 and 1036 Crane St. (site of future library)