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Eyesore to get a facelift

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Neighbors of three houses left unfinished for four years want someone to rescue the buildings. The original builder has abandoned the property.

The three, 2-family houses at 237 Robinson Avenue are languishing in various states of incompletion. The city Department of Housing Preservation and Development recently secured the premises after a fallen construction fence exposed the site to intruders.

The property has attracted the attention of Councilman Jimmy Vacca when neighbors on the block expressed concerns about trespassers. The city has promised to protect the property and if possible ensure that the houses are finished.

“I am pleased that the city has now stepped in,” Vacca said. “Legislation I supported in the City Council that deals with stalled sites such as [those on] Robinson Avenue will allow the city increased powers to act on locations that have so many violations and pose safety and eyesore issues.”

An open city Department of Buildings violation for a “stalled construction site” exists on the property and nearly 30 other HPD and DOB violations were previously issued. Construction began in 2004 during a building boom, but stopped soon after, leaving all three houses on the property unfinished. According to neighbors, the developer is serving a jail sentence.

HPD is now listed on DOB documents as the owner of the property. Neighbors on the block hope someone will come forward and complete the houses.

“There were two houses [under construction] across from [237 Robinson Avenue] that also were abandoned for a time but [that] are now completed and occupied,” neighbor Thomas Pallman said. “The incomplete houses [at 237 Robinson Avenue] are an eyesore. One is less than halfway complete. The other two are nowhere near complete. Luckily, so far we have not had any serious problems with vandalism.”

Nevertheless, Pallman is anxious to see action on Robinson Avenue.

Reach reporter Patrick Rocchio at 718 742-3393 or procchio@cnglocal.com

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CNG: Community Newspaper Group