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Sale in the works for YMCA

A sale is in the works for the defunct YMCA building in Tyrone even as a compliance deadline for repairs to a portion of its exterior passed last week.
“Y” representative Peter Dutrow said there is a “perspective buyer” for the building. He said relatives of the “perspective buyer” were in town over the weekend to see the building. Dutrow said he personally had not been involved in the negotiations but a contract had been signed with the potential buyer to have financing for the sale in place by late last month. Dutrow said that had been accomplished. He said the deal was expected to be finalized by mid-February at the latest.
As for the compliance issues for the building, no action has yet been taken by the borough regarding problems that became evident last summer when a piece of a cornice came crashing down on the sidewalk at the front of the “Y”.
Code enforcement officer Tom Lang had extended to deadline for compliance until Jan. 12. When Lang was asked about the situation earlier this week, he was only able to say that the borough was “in negotiations” with YMCA officials.
The building was closed shortly after the flood in September of 2004. Much of the building had already been closed off to the public even before the flood because it was not in compliance with current codes. The 93-year-old building needed major repairs and renovations to bring it up to code. Funding for such work was not in place and the flood left officials with no choice but to shut it down.
In July of last year, a decorative cornice at the top of the building fell to the ground. Borough code officer Tom Lang said the incident happened during or shortly after what he described as an extensive rainstorm.
Borough officials closed the sidewalk and the surrounding area in front of the building for safety reasons. Since then the “Y” installed a metal fence around the sidewalk and the parking spaces outside the front entrance of the building.
After the July incident, Lang inspected the remaining cornice area and turned up some concerns.
The borough informed the “Y” that a structural engineer needed to inspect the entire facade of the building and supply the borough with a copy of a report and a schedule for repair of any items that needed to be addressed. Lang informed the “Y” that his inspection showed cracked cornices and brick that was missing mortar. The borough was concerned for residents who use the parking lots, street and sidewalk area surrounding the building.
Lang issued a compliance order in October to remove property maintenance violations at the building. The compliance order allowed for a 60-day period for the problems to be fixed.
The borough received a request from the YMCA board president Linda Hershey asking for more time to comply with the borough’s order. In a November 2005 letter to Hershey, Lang said the borough decided to grant the request to permit the YMCA extra time to complete the sale of the building.
Lang told Hershey that the borough would extend the compliance order until Jan. 12.
He said the borough would not extend the order beyond that date because of the existing safety issues and impending winter weather that could cause further structural deterioration to the building.
Lang noted if the building were sold, the new owner would assume the full responsibility for the repairs. He said the “Y” was required to reveal the compliance order to a new owner.
Lang noted under the borough’s code, it is unlawful to sell a property until the provisions of an order have been complied with by the seller or until the borough received a notarized statement that the new owner had received a copy of the compliance order or violation and accepted full responsibility to make the needed corrections or repairs.