Demolition of former Desperados bar in Ogdensburg to begin in December

Nov. 28—OGDENSBURG — Demolition of a building that most recently housed Desperados bar at 212 Ford St. will begin in early December and could take a month to complete.

In August, the Ogdensburg City Council agreed to demolish 212 Ford St. and authorized Bronze Contracting LLC, of Remsen, to complete the project at a cost not to exceed $278,800. The cost associated with the demolition will be taken out of the city's general fund.

Andrea L. Smith, city director of Planning and Development, said the demolition will begin Dec. 6 and estimated that it would take up to 10 days to bring the entire structure down. Hauling of the building materials would take am estimated five additional days.

The entire project is expected to take approximately a month.

A letter dated Nov. 22 and written by Ms. Smith was sent to property owners within 200 feet of 212 Ford St. and was intended to be shared with any tenants of those buildings.

"While we do not anticipate any need for businesses to close, we do recognize this will present some level of inconvenience," Ms. Smith wrote in the letter. "We are working closely to ensure that this inconvenience is minimized to the greatest extent practicable, and we appreciate your understanding."

Ms. Smith wrote that the section of Ford Street, west of State Street, will be closed to vehicular traffic for the first full week of demolition "as a precaution to ensure safety of the public and employees engaged in the demolition effort."

She added that a portion of the rear parking lot will also be cordoned off for construction vehicles, equipment storage and entering and exiting the demolition site.

The building is most known for housing the former 42,240-square-foot J.J. Newberry department store from the 1940s to the 1960s, according to historians, who added the building was spared the wrecking ball during urban renewal in Ogdensburg in the 1970s when the department store closed.

After sitting empty for years, the property was purchased and remodeled as the Desperados Restaurant and Bar, which City Councilor William B. Dillabough owned and operated until its closure. The popular eatery and night spot went out of business in 2003, and the city eventually acquired the property for non-payment of taxes.