Demolition: 68 Campbell Street

The days are numbered for 68 Campbell (map). At the recent city council meeting, it was announced that this building will be demolished as soon as the city receives a variance and has chosen a contractor.

This really does not come as much of a surprise. I photographed the building in 2010 as a Rescue Me property. Then in 2012, I found it on eBay listed at $15,000. Fast forward to today, 2017 it appears there was a fire that was started possibly from 4th of July fireworks. Upon further inspection, the city found that most of the bluestone lintels on the building had been stolen. Their removal compromises the building as it holds floor joists and supporting elements of the building together. DPW, the fire department, and the city engineer all determined that the building must be demolished to protect the public. Till then, the sidewalks of Campbell and Johnston have been blocked off to pedestrians.  The City of Newburgh is the property owner.

13 Comment

  • Still waiting on demolition of 161 Lander …literally a half building garbage dump.

  • It would be interesting to see if/when

    the city starts/started to go to the outside for competitive bids on some of its work.

    I know that I am going to pay directly or indirectly for this remark.

    This does not hold true for extreme cases but say the city would get some bids and then offer investors the
    opportunity to rehab a building with some sort of a rebate or incentive. There are beautiful buildings
    that could be rehabbed with some help. Take as an expample 215 1st Street. I would assume that it
    will end up on this list.

    I am not here to pass judgement but I feel there are alternatives.

    I have been in enough properties to feel for people that have neighboring properties.

    There has to be a compomise here


  • It is economic. If as you indicate it might cost $100,000 to clear the building that would indicated the building cost is say $1,880 plus the $100,000 to the buyer who must do pretty much the same thing. This tends to be one of the problems. General sales prices tend to be in the $120.00 a sf. around the City. In this situation, total construction costs will end up much more. This carries over to getting financing since appraisals tend to be conservative in Newburgh.

    I did not mean this to be a blanket condemnation of Newburgh or the powers to be
    but there are still 700 properties out there.

    Certainly willing to stand corrected.


    • It’s myopic. Who will “investors” rent to? Newburgh currently spends just shy of half its budget on ‘Safety’, leaving the Dept. of Public works with…5% (and newbies bitch about roads and trees). School taxes run close to equaling City taxes. Newburgh has been subsidizing housing for decades…your concept just does it on the front end, which isn’t not too far removed from what’s currently in place, i.e. the Landbank, H4H, grants. The ‘Burgh planners haven’t been discounting the high costs to live in the city…essentially warehousing people without adding value. Cher included an article in the ‘Weekly Links’ pertaining to NY’s anti-poverty initiative. With respect to that and to my comment, consider this…by 2025 75% of the nation’s workforce will be comprised of millennials. However, NY state ranked #1 in the nation for having a ‘net loss of millennial taxpayers and their dependents’. Historically, this age group is the economic engine. They’re basically saying that despite historically low financing rates, “incentives”, NY’s rent is too damn high relative to their $’s valuation.
      Until the ‘Burgh changes who they cater to, $100 grand incentives are just a reset fee for the status quo. ‘Better to demo the buildings, create a playground/garden and up the DPW’s share of the budget.
      btw, according to City recent sales of multi-family price per sq.’ run $70 avg. ‘ytd…

  • Why don’t the city of Newburgh sell 215 1st Street to first time homebuyer with the funds to rehab for $1?

    • ^this^ plus a $100k performance bond. As an added “incentive”, the ‘City reimburses the principal for their premiums paid to the bonding co. upon completion of the building(s) . Take the reimbursement out of CDBG funds.

    • We welcome ANY offers on ALL of our properties. The current top 8 on our “watch for falling and might have to demo” list are: 139 Johnston Street; 251 Third Street; 191 South Street; 161 Lander Street; 140 Third Street; 115 Johnston Street; 251 First Street; 253 First Street. These properties are in TERRIBLE SHAPE. But literally anyone is welcome to talk to us about purchase. We would love to see all of our properties restored like 2 Liberty Street (formerly top of our demo list).

      We don’t require performance bonds– we require proof that you have the financial and experiential means to renovate the property and obtain a CO in 18 months. For all of these properties we are talking a minimum of $100k investment and probably closer to $250k for most of these.

      Also please keep in mind that Cities are governed by the “Gift of Public Funds” rules in the State Constitution. We cannot gift money or property. I understand how that is frustrating in this specific instance, but as a rule it makes sense overall. That is why the State created entities like Land Banks and why the City works so closely with groups like Habitat. In these specific cases though, both Habitat and the Land Bank do not have the means to restore.


      • This thread is getting tired, but a distinction needs to be made in it. A ‘condemned’ house cannot be sold as a “house”. A ‘structurally damaged’ house cannot be mortgaged by a regulated lender (which, you alluded to, is one reason why the NCLB & H4H exist). Both buildings are considered liabilities, where as a ‘house in poor condition’ is relative. Without a bond requirement, “proof” still does not ensure follow through. Which, in Newburgh’s case, has been a problem as its recourse is to take ownership again. Why not require a bond? A sale at $1 is not considered a gift, a ‘reimbursement’ is debatable. If ‘consideration’ is given and it serves a public purpose (that’s the crux), it’s an allowable expense. One can debate the merits of some of the City’s projects and taxation in general on this premise. So it gets back to…what is Newburgh really ‘selling’ and to who. Thanks for you work : )