Disaster storefront on N. Salina St.
Wed, 10 Mar 2010 00:03:52 GMT —
The city has spent the last decade, trying to revitalize North Salina Street and the Little Italy area. But, it's no easy task.
Ben Walsh, with the City of Syracuse Neighborhood and Business Development, said, "All you have to do is look around North Salina, Little Italy, to realize we have a great stock of historic properties here."
City officials say they've spent a decade working on this stretch of North Salina Street trying to make it look nice.
"If you look around, you'll see it in terms of both public infrastructure, sidewalks, curbing, lighting, also see it on facades and out sides of some properties," said Walsh.
But there are properties that are standing in the way like one in the 400 block of North Salina Street. It's owned by Ilias Fekos. He rents it to a man named Frank who runs a variety store at the location.
Jusue Harrison owns and runs CBM sportswear next door to the storefront. He said, "If I look at this side it looks beautiful and the other side, trash. It's is very difficult for me to operate."
He says he's offered to help clean the windows or pick up, but the tenant, who only opens the storefront in the warmer months always says no.
"What can I do for you to make this place look decent and to invite other people to come see us? He doesn't want to do it," said Harrison.
The tenant claims he keeps the storefront like this because it keeps vandals and thieves away from his property. Next door, Harrison says he doesn't have issues with crime. He says the city's work has been good for his shop and the neighborhood and he wants to see that continue with the storefront next door.
"People may not see it how we see it but we, the locals, really think city doing a good job," said Harrison.
The city is citing the building owner for window and paint violations. The fire department is also looking to the building to determine if all this stuff is causing a fire hazard.