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2 Former Mayor's and Current Mayor On Hand to Celebrate Demo of Longtime Eye Sore
Saturday, September 22, 2012
2 Former Mayor's and Current Mayor On Hand to Celebrate Demo of Longtime Eye Sore
Cortland City Officials including two former City Mayors gathered at a defunct gas station on Clinton Avenue yesterday to celebrate the demolition of the longtime eyesore.

Last month, local developer and real estate magnate Jim Yaman announced that he had successfully brokered a deal to have the former Gulf Gas Station on the corner of River Street and Clinton Avenue taken down.

After nearly 30 years and several failed attempts by local elected officials Yaman decided to spend $30 thousand dollars of his own money to have the dilapidated building removed and have the property landscaped.

Yaman says he wants to cleanup the blighted site as a benefit for the community.

Yaman reached a deal with property owner Michael Pichel of Ithaca to allow the work to go forward. In exchange, Cortland City Assessor David Briggs reduced the assessed value of the small parcel by 100 thousand dollars.

Local demolition contractor Jerry Contento Jr. will conduct the removal.

Yesterday, Current Mayor Brian Tobin along with former democratic Mayors, Tom Gallagher and Ron Walsh, took sledgehammers to the structure to celebrate the buildings demolition.

Walsh says he tried having it torn down during his term to no avail.

Gallagher also attempted to have the building razed, but also ran into legal obstacles.

Tobin says the removal coincides with the city’s gateway redevelopment plan for the Riverside area.

Yaman has attempted to broker a deal wit the owners of the nearby Ramada Inn to purchase the property, but the hotel is for sale and the current owners have not shown interest in the site.

Following demolition, Yaman has hired Valley Views Gardens to landscape the parcel.

The former gas station has sat idle for over twenty years, it was last used a tourism office. Yesterday crews removed trees at the site. The actual demolition will begin Monday.
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