Abandoned shoe factory could get the boot

By Megan Carpenter

December 5, 2013 Updated Dec 5, 2013 at 12:44 AM EDT

Town of Union, NY (WBNG Binghamton) What should be done with one of the remaining bastions of Greater Binghamton's economy? That was the topic at Wednesday night's Town of Union Board meeting.

Members focused on whether to tear down the vacant Endicott Johnson shoe factory building at North Page Avenue and Maple Street in Endicott. The board said it's had several code violations over the past six years. The board heard from several people who have inspected the building since November, 2012.

"There were large areas in the building, 20 foot by 40 foot, 40 foot by 40 foot, where there wasn't any floor," said Professional Engineer Edwin Gent. "The floor had totally collapsed."

One of the owners spoke about his efforts to make the structure safer. Board members said they emailed him to do so in February.

"I did send a contractor to board up the building and do that work," said former owner Ralph Pavone. "When I got to the second subsequent inspection, I found that the work was sub par."

Pavone said he emailed the board in July, asking to secure the building's doors so no one could get inside. He said the board did not respond. Pavone said he pays the mortgage on the building, although it's owned under a different name.

He also said he has an existing contract with National Pipe and Plastics, which is expanding in west Endicott and could repurpose the old EJ building.

The board hasn't given any indication as to when a decision would be made.

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