IDO and Irvington Historical Society partnered to buy the property at the corner of Ritter Avenue and Washington Street, the location of the former Irvington Post Office, in late 2012. We were in the process of rehabilitating the building when it collapsed in a storm in November 2013. The committee charged with administering the property is comprised of representatives from both organizations. Their priority has been to find a buyer who will construct a building on the site in order to restore the urban edge at this critical gateway to our business district and bring additional retail options. This will help create a deeper critical mass of shopping and activity in our corridor.
We have been trying to market the site and have had some nibbles so far. After the building fell, leaving only a gravel lot, the property seemed to shrink in size, if only in potential buyers’ minds. It was difficult to remember that there had been a building there and to imagine that one could ever be there again. In order to spark that imagination of what opportunities there the property holds, Mike Halstead and Jennifer Lofton of Halstead Architects drafted some preliminary drawings of a feasible structure on that footprint.
This is not to say that this building is going to go there or should go there, but might go there, could go there. With the renderings, we intend to spark an idea for the property, make it easier for a developer to realize that this little “postage-sized” lot could once again hold a substantial building.
This in no way addresses all the challenges that this site possesses, but attempts to prepare for some of the hurdles that lie ahead.