Downtown Demolition: Calculating the Cost

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ELMIRA, N.Y. (18-NEWS) — Demolition in downtown Elmira is complete and now crews are cleaning up, but city officials are fighting to regain the hefty costs they’ve paid for the project.

City officials say the cost of this past week’s emergency demolition has exceeded their annually allotted demolition funds by over $100,000.

Uri Kaufman, managing partner of the Harmony Water Company and owner of the old Rosenbaum and Marvin’s buildings said that the company would be unable to take on the costs of the demolition when it was deemed a public hazard.

This decision ultimately left the responsibility and cost of last week’s demolition up to the city, despite it being privately owned property.

Mayor, Sue Skidmore says the city will fight back, and that she’s deeply disappointed in the Harmany Water Company. 

“To leave small Elmira in the predicament that they left it in, is unconscionable. So, I’m really disappointed in Uri and his organization, we will have to try to recoup that money because the City of Elmira, and it’s tax payers can’t afford to pick up the bill on this.”

The next step is likely a lengthy legal battle to try to obtain and recover the lost funds.

The current process of asbestos contaminated material removal and transportation has costed the city $100,000 in addition to demolition fees. 

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