Demolition Crews Make Way for Senior Living Community

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NEW MILFORD -- The old Southern Tier plastics building in New Milford has been empty for more than a decade. But Monday, crews began tearing it to the ground, making way for a new development and a much-needed development in Susquehanna County.

Carlton Bailey has lived near this industrial building for more than 50 years and has seen many businesses come and go, but says it's been sitting vacant for more than 10 years.

"There was a silk mill, a refrigeration company, a chain and ladder operation, then another refrigeration unit and the last had been a plastics factory," Bailey said.

Many neighbors say they're happy to see this building come crashing to the ground.

"The walls have recently started to cave in, obviously looking at it, it's a dilapidated structure," Jackie Ferenczi of New Milford said. "We are thankful to see it come down today."

New Milford Vice President Lawrence White said, "The building was dilapidated, falling down, it was basically a safety risk, a health risk and we`re happy to see it go."

It will take crews about a week to pick up all of the pieces, but neighbors in New Milford say they're excited for what`s in store for this property once it`s all cleaned up.

The Susquehanna County Housing and Redevelopment Corporation is planning to build a 24-apartment senior living community on the property - a $5.7 million project.

 "It`s big, and it`s well needed," White said. "There`s a lot of older residents in the community, baby boomers and older citizens that have lived in the community their whole lives and this is a great opportunity for them to stay in the community."

"With new jobs created and new people coming in and it`s going to be a pretty building not an eyesore," said Cindy Chase of New Milford.

Crews hope to have this rubble turned into cozy senior apartments by December of 2013. Seniors must be 62 years or older to apply to live in the development and officials say there will be rental assistance for residents.