Shippenville Eyesore Building Scheduled for Demo When Weather Breaks
SHIPPENVILLE, Pa. (EYT) – Twenty years ago it seemed like a good idea to buy the house at 317 Main Street in Shippenville. Owner Jack Troese of Clarion is now planning to tear it down following complaints from Shippenville Borough Council that it could pose a hazard to neighboring people and properties.
“We bought it pretty cheap and the foundation was pretty bad in it,” said Troese Thursday morning in an interview with exploreClarion.com.
“It comes down to how much money you put into it. We’re scheduled to tear it down once the weather breaks here. There is a bunch of stuff that needs to be salvaged out of the building before it is torn down.”
Over the years, the condition of the building deteriorated, and Shippenville Borough received numerous complaints.
“We had trouble all of last year,” said Linda Duffee, Shippenville Borough Council President. “There were times when you would go into the borough office, and the only complaints and calls that would be on the phone would be complaints about debris blowing off the building and into the street and people afraid they were going to get flat tires. The rotting parts of the building would blow off in high winds.”
Council did decide to file a complaint with the district magistrate about the building, but it was pulled April 5 because there were some technical problems regarding the listing of the owner.
“The only reason we canceled it is that we needed to file it correctly,” said Duffee. “I don’t know if we plan to refile or not. With these Sunshine laws, we can’t do anything outside of a meeting. We don’t have a meeting until April 25, and maybe I could talk with Jack and come back to council with a recommendation.”
“He’s told at least two people in the community about his plans to tear the building down, and that’s all we wanted to do from the beginning. We wanted him to meet with us and tell us what he was doing.”
Troese admitted there were challenges from the beginning with the building.
“Since we have owned it, the foundation was never any good,” said Troese. “I went in and rebuilt the foundation, changed the electric, tore down all of the trees around it, and there was even an old kennel.”
One of the most unusual things Troese found after buying the building was about “two tons” of shoe rubber in the basement that had to be removed. Troese said the building once housed a cobbler, and he took all of the leftover shoe rubber and dumped it in the basement.
Duffee agreed that could have been the case because it was once owned by Dick and Ruby Salvo, and it was home to the Salvo family and Dick’s Cleaners.
“Dick repaired shoes, and he saved everything,” said Duffee. “He repaired all kinds of shoes. You could take 25 cents down there and put a heel on your shoe. They raised a big family in that building.”
Earlier the building was a hardware store, and after the Salvos, it housed Wallyboe’s Pizza until Troese bought it.
“I did have it rented out for a while,” Troese continued. “What happened – there was supposed to be a person who would move in and do repairs with the potential of purchasing it. He was going to rent it, and I just had my hips and health problems and couldn’t keep up with him when he wasn’t doing it. I don’t know if he had the resources to fix the roof.”
“The bids I got for repairing the roof were so astronomically high it wasn’t worth doing. It’s how much money you are going to put into it, and in the end, you don’t have anything, anyway.”
At this point, Troese is unsure of the best use for the soon to be empty lot.
“We just don’t know. We may rebuild on it.”
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