Alms House Set To Be Demolished

By Julianne Sweeney

July 22, 2010 Updated Dec 12, 2008 at 11:01 PM EDT

Broome County will soon bid far well to a historic building.

Last night, the Broome Community College Board of Trustees voted unanimously to demolish the Alms House.

As Action News Reporter Julianne Sweeney tells us the goodbye will be bittersweet for some people.

The Alms House is a longtime landmark.

It was built in 1870 and is now part of the BCC campus.

The deteriorating building was once used as classroom space.

Its Board of Trustees is in agreement, it must come down.

"A decision had to be made, and I'm just pleased that it was done." says BCC V.P. of Financial Affairs Grant Newton.

The Alms House sits near Upper Front Street. It's been vacant for 10-years and is deemed unsafe.

"This has been long time coming. Unfortunately the building has been allowed to deteriorate for several years." says Broome County Executive Barbara Fiala.

After demolition, BCC is looking to turn the empty space into an access road to student parking.

It's part of the 10-year master plan to improve the college.

"It would be a disappointment because there's a lot of empty land around there that could be used as parking lots. says Chas Browne of the Broome County Historical Society

Chas Browne is an archivist.

The Alms House was originally part of the Poor Farm.

He says records show the building used to house poor people in the county.

Browne is disappointed this piece of history will soon be gone.

"There's a lesson to learn here, ya know, this is a part of our history." says Fiala.

Fiala hopes bricks from the Alms House are salvaged to be used for a campus construction project.

Or that a plaque is placed at the site.

That way future generations will know Broome County's past.

The Alms House could be demolished as soon as this Spring.

It'll cost about 350-thousand dollars, split between New York State and Broome County.

To submit a comment on this article, your email address is required. We respect your privacy and your email will not be visible to others nor will it be added to any email lists.