Housing Court Judge Patrick Carney today told an attorney representing the owner of the blacksmith shop at 118 South Park Avenue that the building must be fixed in two weeks or the owner, Darryl Carr, will be jailed. Carr, who unsuccessfully tried to get the 19th-Century building demolished earlier this year, will now be hard-pressed to complete the necessary repairs on the property to bring the property up to code. An unhappy Judge Carney suggested to attorney James Milbrand that he have Carr "bring a toothbrush and some clean underwear" to the next scheduled court date in two weeks.
Carr had been ordered by the court to stabilize the building and correct code violations. Minor work has been done to the property in recent weeks including the boarding of several windows. It was not enough to please the court as adjacent property owners and City Inspector Michael Muscarella testified that conditions have only gotten worse. Many fear the building may not last the winter unless corrective actions are not taken either by Carr or by the City.
Among the violations at the property are additional open and broken windows, significantly degraded and missing brick causing water damage, a deteriorated roof, and a rat/rodent problem. Carr's other buildings along Illinois Street are also in disrepair including missing foundation stones, a partial collapse of one of the walls , damaged roofs, water damaged bricks and open/broken windows.
Carr, owner of Cobblestone Bar that is adjacent to the properties at South Park and Mississippi Street, is said to have reuse plans for the property. Most say his only goal is additional parking. At least two capable developers have tried to purchase and redevelop the buildings without success. The Buffalo Sabres organization is also said to have inquired about the availability of the building.