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Proposal to save church facade rejected

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— A developer has rejected a proposal to incorporate parts of a former Catholic church in a new supermarket it’s building.

Preservationists who’ve been trying to save the building in Watervliet from the wrecking ball tried to convince the developer to scale back the project and include the 137-foot bell tower and facade of St. Patrick’s Church.

But the Nigro Companies said Tuesday the changes would be too costly, would result in a market too small to serve the community and would leave concerns about the safety of the structure.

A citizens group has obtained a temporary restraining order to halt demolition of the church while an appeal is made to the state Appellate Division.

The developer says it intends to go ahead with its original plan.



April 10, 2013
12:27 p.m.

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Ah, Nigro. Erasing our communities' heritage one building at a time. East Greenbush (historic Defreest-Church House), Niskayuna (historic Ingersoll home, barely saved, property destroyed), and now Watervliet. What have they done that we missed? What else will they do? And Price Chopper should be ashamed for going along with this (although I expect they'll claim, as Target did in East Greenbush, that "they're just renters and can't affect the decision." Which is absurd.Trust me.

April 10, 2013
6:37 p.m.

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The property was legitimately purchased. Yes, it is a shame that the church has to be torn down. However, no one else could come up with the money to purchase the property and make necessary repairs and upgrades to save it. I cannot understand why we think we have the right to tell a developer what to do with the property they purchase once they get permission from the local and state governments to go through with their plans.

If these groups want to preserve these properties, they need to figure out how to purchase them and get investors to buy into upgrades and fill them with tenants.