Archive for December 5th, 2012

Design Review: OK to Demo “Jungle” Buildings

The Design Review Board easily gave its approval this afternoon to the intended demolition of three “non-contributing” buildings on two parcels of property owned by William Alsup, Jr. in the East End of Woodstock.  They are generally steel buildings or remnants of buildings, clearly in disrepair, once used as part of Alsup’s POMA lift production operations.

According to Town Zoning Administrator Michael Brands, the owner of the long-fallow property is seeking to “clean-up” the site as much as possible to make the parcels easier to sell.

Brands and Design Review Board members closely inspected various maps of the site, which includes two parcels belonging to Alsup. In all, both within and without Design Review borders, there are five buildings slated for demolition in the so-called “Jungle” area in the near future. None of them are considered historically significant.

Three of the most important buildings that were part of the Woodstock Railroad Station will remain standing and were not on the chopping block. One of those is the old RR ticket office which many know as the old NAPA Auto Parts Store. There is also an old Woodstock railroad baggage building that will remain as well.

Some DRB members were unclear about the area being discussed thinking that it had been turned into a park. That is not the case. These two parcels in question are located ABOVE the lower bank parcel owned by the Village of Woodstock which in recent history has been used as a snow dump. That Village parcel was recently “re-named” a park for bureaucratic reasons,  although it will continue this season as a snow dump area.

The buildings approved for demolition today are still privately owned, in the hands of Mr. Alsup. His real estate agent, Lynne Bertram, has been handling his property and the efforts to make it a palatable offering for development.

Design Review Board members noted there would be little change to what people see as they drive by on Pleasant Street and seemed quite happy to help get rid of buildings that are — at this point — of no use and such an insult to their aesthetic sensibilities.