Friday incident brings attention to downtown Tyrone landmark

Friday night brought attention to a downtown Tyrone landmark when large chunks of material came loose from a corner of the top of the building.
The YMCA building on Logan Avenue has been shuttered for several months after suffering damage from last September’s flooding. The building had already faced a massive renovation project to bring the 92-year-old building up to code even before the flood forced Y officials to pull the plug entirely. Prior to the flood, the Y had decided to close the second and third floors. Funding to bring the building up to code was not in place when the flooding damaged the gym floor and other parts of the lower level.
The closure of the second and third floors had already forced The Tyrone Community Players to seek a new home when they had to move out of the theater on the second floor of the Y. Even before the flood, residents on the third floor had already been told to leave by the end of October.
The Emmanuel Baptist Church had offices and held services at the Y and has since relocated. Preschool and athletic programs were also affected. Through the efforts of the Hollidaysburg YMCA and the approval of the Tyrone Area School District, many of the programs were able to continue despite the building’s problems and eventual closure.
The Friday evening incident happened around the time storms passed through the area. A downtown resident said he had noticed problems with the building while walking near it days earlier. He said he could see a visible gap between the materials, which made up the top corner closest to the borough’s municipal parking lot.
After the incident, Borough Police taped off the sidewalk around the building to prevent people from walking underneath it.
Code Enforcement officer Tom Lang and YMCA representative Peter Dutrow inspected the damage on Saturday morning. There was concern further pieces of the material which had broken loose could fall to the ground. Several chunks littered the sidewalk and the banister of the building’s steps. The sidewalk outside the building remained taped this morning.
Dutrow said the building remains on the market for sale. He said the price on the building had been lowered in an effort to sell it to help pay off debts still owed by the organization. He referred any further questions about the sale of the building to the real estate agent hired by the YMCA.