Every election year the people either running for re-election, or the challenger, stress the need for rehabilitating the blighted buildings in the city. Make no doubt, our current mayor did the same. Albany’s downtown neighborhoods, with a pretty good guess at saying, exists from Broadway to Manning boulevard from east to west, and Livingston avenue to Morton Avenue north to south. This area is the cornerstone of the folks that built our city. They are also the neighborhood’s that contain the urban decline. A couple of days ago, a building on the one hundred block of Clinton Avenue collapsed. So what. That’s just one more that we don’t have to worry about anymore. The problem is, there was a family next door, with a father and mother, and children. The other problem is, that the building in question which was built 160 years ago, is attached at the hip to the one’s on either side. That was how they built things way back to accommodate the influx of people moving into our city. The problem is — and you can see it from looking at a home next to one that has been demolished — they share a common wall. The only thing holding them together are the front and back walls. Chances are, the one next door will have to come down also. We had some beautiful insight from the director of the Historic Albany Foundation — who is always on board with nothing to say when she knows she’s wrong — who said the buildings, if not looked after, would atrophy. Wow, Susan, you’ve become an engineer again. And to you Mayor Sheehan, are you going to hope for every blighted building to fall down? Isn’t up to you and the county to keep track of the owners of these buildings? They stop paying taxes on the property, and you just let them skip town? If it were me doing that, I’d have so much bureaucracy up my ass, I couldn’t skip town. And now, you can’t remove the demolition debris from the site because of potential lead and asbestos contamination. That’s great. If the wind blows tomorrow like it has over the weekend, you could have asbestos dust in Loudonville by Monday afternoon. Maybe then — when somebody who pays fifty thousand dollars a year in property taxes — might you think about getting rid of the house on Clinton Avenue. Or do you have to do a study to see how far asbestos can travel if the wind is blowing at fifteen miles an hour? Or do you have to check in with Susan to make sure that some maple Bannister inside the collapsed house can be reclaimed. It looks to me like the city will probably be building a new home for the family who has been displaced by this fiasco. Good for them. Wise up, Ms. Mayor. Start fulfilling a campaign promise.……….I want to apologize to my faithful readers, and to my always welcome visitors to our fair city who may choose to read my blog, for being absent for a while. To the visitors, enjoy our city; we are the Capital City of the State of New York.……….I want to weigh in on the casino thing which will drop on some unwilling community by the fall. Even though the state as a whole voted for casino’s in New York, I am of the thought that any siting within one hundred miles of the Capital District is a bad idea. I just don’t want to drive down 787 and see a glitzy building sitting on the other side of the river. People in Albany who don’t need to gamble, will gamble; people that can afford to gamble, will go somewhere else. One thing that’s for sure though, there wasn’t a snowballs chance in hell that a casino would ever exist within the confines of the city of Albany. Know why? Because the new overly Progressive, and ultimately overly Liberal new administration didn’t have the stones to pull the trigger. End of story. Welcome visitors.
And That Is: “The Daily Take”