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A chance to rise from ruin

Masonic property has new owner, but no current plan

October 27, 2013

By GIB SNYDER OBSERVER City Editor Prior to February 2010, Dunkirk’s 300 block of Central Avenue was graced by the presence of the Masonic Temple, a three-story structure completed and opened in 1909....

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Oct-27-13 12:57 AM

Oh, well, it won't take but a minute or two for Dunkirk residents to shoot this whole idea to shreds.

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Oct-27-13 5:28 AM

He only paid $10,000? Why…Dunkirk should step right in and buy it for a million, is Dutch B. the new owner? lol.

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Oct-27-13 6:10 AM

This sale is allegedly between two private individuals, so why protect the identity of the buyer? No doubt the purchase price for these multiple lots was unbelievably low since they're in such a prime retail location, but that was between the out-of-town owner and the buyer.

Who wants to bet the new owner has close ties with city hall?

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Oct-27-13 8:38 AM

so the property is assessed at a fraction of what it is really worth, we tend to believe that the new owners will sit on this property till they can make a big buck, after all with the present tax assessment it a win-win for the owners, and a loss as always for the community

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Oct-27-13 8:43 AM

i am pretty sure the masons did not allow women members till very late in history. i wonder why they did that ? Hmmm.

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Oct-27-13 9:03 AM

The idenity is hidden in the LLC like all Limited License Corp's. If you feel the assesment for a tiny lot is cheap, look at your assessment on your land and compare them. It will cost hundreds of thousands to build on this lot. And any one of us could have contacted to owner to buy this cheap property if we really felt it was cheap. I did not. And stiener is just an idiot for the comment he makes. likes to live in the stone age. I never agree or disagree with his remarks, not worthy of being rated.

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Oct-27-13 9:31 AM

Didn't take long did it localresident. Could have almost guessed who it would be.

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Oct-27-13 9:53 AM

Could somebody at least put some topsoil and grass seed down to cover this lot?

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Oct-27-13 10:12 AM

Private sector investment is essential for any community to grow. So, what can the city do to help? Start by removing all those nasty parking meters that serve as a deterrent to commercial development. Drastically reduce taxes and seek ways to promote cost-effective government through mergers, consolidations and sharing of services, manpower and equipment. Privatize every government function that can be done cheaper and better by the private sector. If we are serious about growth and development it is critical that efforts be made to promote traffic flow in the city. Whatever business is established on Central Avenue should be a traffic magnet. With traffic flow will develop more commercial development, more prosperity and more jobs for area residents.

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Oct-27-13 12:41 PM

Could be good news. Hope so. The photo is interesting in that it seems to show an "arch" across Central Ave a-la Brocton. It may have been the fashion of the day for cities to do that. Never saw it in my day.

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Oct-27-13 1:27 PM

Yeah, Joe, I can't *imagine* why Dunkirk is never able to follow through on any reasonable development plans. The only ones that make sense to them are the unreasonable ones. Nice track record!

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Oct-27-13 1:28 PM

Maybe the new owner will build a nice multi story low income housing complex using government grant money. This would work out perfect with social services being right next door. Maybe even have the two buildings connected with a private entrance.

The worst decision the city ever made,imo was urban renewal that destroyed the downtown architecture and put all the craftsmen who maintained these buildings out of work.

Would be interesting to see the Observer do a time line story on the loss of business, historic buildings and manufacturing over the last 30 to 40 years. I've watched the city decay in slow motion.

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Oct-27-13 3:33 PM

it would be nice to see something like the building they built in Westfield that replaced the Monroe Collectibles store.

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Oct-27-13 5:54 PM

Does anybody really read these articles or do they just go directly to comments"??? It sounds more like an investment rather than a development!!!

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Oct-27-13 9:33 PM

Veteran1957 we need to get a environmental impact study done,that shouldn't take more than 6 months. Then of course the seed will have to meet code and then it will go out to bid and of course will have to be done by seed sowers local 1010.

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Oct-28-13 7:58 AM


Care to tell us, since you seem to be the expert, what the property "Is really worth?"

Also you might want to note that it's not unusual for properties in Dunkirk to sell for less then their assessed value, in fact, it's almost the norm.

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Oct-28-13 8:21 AM

Wow, it only took 4 comments before someone complained that the investor paid too little for the property. IT'S A VACANT LOT IN THE MIDDLE OF DOWNTOWN!!! SELL IT FOR $3 DOLLARS FOR ALL I CARE!!! rumblefish is just as bad as the politicians.

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Oct-28-13 8:32 AM

A similar property thing happened in Niagara Falls. A speculator bought land on the cheap. Nothing happened for years. then someone wants the land for a development and is willing to pay several times the original price. A very good profit was realized. Thats the American way folks, buy low sell high. Noone here ever heard of this ? All it takes is someone with money and patience.There is risk here as the area is losing jobs. Someone is taking a bet, like in a casino and hoping. Who are we to judge ?

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Oct-28-13 8:45 AM

****, SO you are comparing Niagara Falls commercial property and income potencial to Dunkirk's. OH yah, i see the the real value of the Dunkirk property now,LOL

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Oct-28-13 8:46 AM

Exactly what business could be put in that space to help the city? An ice cream stand? What company or individual is going to invest in a city that is on the brink of falling apart? Money people is not the magic elixir that solves all problems. You have to have a foundation to work off of and Dunkirk does not have that. When was the last time you drove down second street? Notice the bed sheets in the windows? The trash? Who is responsible for enforcing these laws? Why the building inspector of course. That is if you can find him. Why are not the laws written in the city code enforced? To much work? Yet the city hires people to run the tv feeds. Nuts.

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Oct-28-13 9:10 AM

using Darkstar's reasoning than the Bertges property must be worth 2 or 3 million, so we believe commercial property should be assessed higher than residential

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Oct-28-13 10:20 AM


Nice try at avoiding the question.

Just because those running the city are stupid, or crooked, enough to pay far more then a property is worth doesn't mean anyone else will.

By the way, the lot, at least on Central, is commercial, although again that is beside the point, you stated the lots are assessed far below their actual value and all I asked is for you to tell us their actual value, which you appear to be unable to do, which proves the ignorance of your statement.

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Oct-28-13 1:13 PM

tell you what DarkStar, go on line and get a copy of the city property tax role, then take a ride and look at a few locations, you may be surprised at what you see...........

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Oct-28-13 2:58 PM


Done it before, and while some of the values surprised me there is nothing there to make me think that these empty lots are appraised for less then they are worth, and considering they sold for far less then even the assessed value makes that even less likely.

So again, how much do you think an empty lot in the middle of a dying city is worth?

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Oct-28-13 3:27 PM

It'll probably be sold at a huge profit to the DLDC - and then the City will have another property to make the payments for...

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