UTICA, N.Y. -- The city of Utica cited the owner of Charles Town Mall of Utica, LLC. with four codes violations on Wednesday.
The citations come after two suspicious fires in the former shopping mall in a month, the most recent, on Sunday. The Utica and Frankfort Center fire chiefs say the fires had multiple points of origin.
Utica City Codes Enforcement ordered the owner of the former Charles Town building to vacate the premises until it's made safe. The owner is ordered to do this immediately. The owner has 72 hours from the time of the fire to secure the premises and keep anyone from entering. The owner must immediately provide codes with the name and mailing address for their insurance company and other insurance information. And, the owner has 30 days to give codes written notification of their intent to demolish, repair or rebuild the structure.
The property lies both in Oneida and Herkimer counties, with a Turner Street, Utica, address. The owner is listed as Charles Town Mall of Utica, LLC. Utica city leaders and Frankfort town officials will meet on Thursday to discuss what to do about the potentially dangerous eyesore.
"Like any abandoned building, they pose a risk to public safety. Whether it be police, fire, the general public, It could just be a two-story house that's condemned and people go in and it collapses on them," says Frankfort Town Supervisor, Glenn Asnoe. "Unfornately we put our first responders in harm's way because of other people's actions and they don't realize the consequences that could happen."