For the past several months a plan has simmered to convert the long vacant and decaying Northside League building into a Boys and Girls Club.
Now as the clock ticks down on the tax sale certificate, advocates have come forward with their plan. There are challenges including perfecting title. There is a new owner in the offing by June if the current owner of record or someone on its behalf fails to pay over $30K in taxes and fees.
A last minute bid to restore the corporation so it could convey title doesn't seem to have come far and whatever happens a court must OK it. Organizers for the Boys Club say they are certain they could get the court approval.
The downside on all this is tax exemption, but in it's current form the property on Mill Street is going nowhere , so the youth club plan deserves a serious look on a couple of levels. One is stabilizing the property, the other is developing more programs for youth as a means of getting a handle on the pathologies that are developing including the acute heroin problem.
Likely such an endeavor would generate foundation and donation money which would restore the property to a community use, which was the original intent of its founders back in 1911.
When I learned about this some weeks back, I did sit on it as I realized there is merit to it developing at its own pace. Now that its out in the open, let's see what develops.
Watertown Daily Times | Children’s Home looking at North Side Improvement League site