City leaders appear skeptical about finding a way to reuse the empty Bristol Armory if the state decides to give it up.
City Councilor Frank Nicastro said that state agencies have yet to express any interest in the old building.
If none want the 61 Center St. structure by March 3, the state will offer it to the city, probably for $1. Its assessed value is $5.2 million.
It isn’t clear the city will agree to take the building, which needs substantial renovation. There is no indication what the city might do with it if officials opt to take it off the state’s hands.
“That building needs so much work it’s unbelievable,” Nicastro said. “And the state doesn’t have any money.”
“Neither does the city,” added city Councilor Mike Rimcoski.
The building housed the Connecticut National Guard’s 102nd Infantry unit for many years until it was moved to New Britain last spring.
Mayor Art Ward has said that city officials and residents should consider ideas for the property soon in anticipation of the expected offer.
But so far, there’s been no indication that anything is in the works.
Ward called the building “totally unsafe” the way it is.
Former Mayor William Stortz said during one of his speeches that the Armory “could be condominiums or offices” if the state no longer needed it.
The chairman of the Bristol Downtown Development Corp, Frank Johnson, has said there “may be an opportunity there.”
“Nothing certain,” Stortz said, but given that it’s one block from the mall site it is “a possibility.”
Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.
Contact Steve Collins at email@example.com