City looks into East Cherry Street building

City Administrator and Redevelopment Director Peter Pelissier said he has asked the city engineer and city construction official to investigate whether the burned out building on East Cherry Street is structurally sound or should be razed.

The barricades that went up in front of the building within the last month were placed there by the Department of Public Works as a precaution, according to Construction Official Richard Watkins. He said the front wall, which is wood frame construction, is no longer held in place by a floor system, so if one leans on the wall, a slight gap opens between the sidewalk and face of the wall.

The eyesore at 65 E. Cherry St. was acquired by Dornoch for $65,000 from the Parking Authority. A fire occurred in summer 2005 when it was home to a wig and beauty supply store.

Prior to the collapse of the real estate market, circa November 2007, Dornoch had plans to develop the property, adding a third floor with residential units on the second and third floors and ground-floor retail.

The grassy lot next door, adjacent to the Rahway Grill, at one point was considered for a possible walkway/promenade access to the Lewis Street parking deck.