Neighbors on Buffalo's East Side Want 28 Clark Street Demolished

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Buried within an overgrown and unkempt property is a vacant house that's falling apart.

Clark Street neighbors on Buffalo's East side say it only brings trouble to the area.

The sidewalk ends in front of 28 Clark Street because shrubs and grass have grown over it, leaving walkers no choice but to step into the street or cross it entirely.

Garbage litters the property, inviting unwelcome guests.

Next door neighbor Roberto Martinez says only animals take up residence here.

"Dogs, rats, name it, and it's around the house," he said.

Martinez is frustrated by the eyesore and says he likes to keep a clean home.

His aunt has called police and inspectors to see if something can be done about it.

Martinez says the vacant home also invites looters, who steal whatever they feel is worth taking, including items that actually belong to his family.

"I already lost stuff. My cousins my uncles...they leave some bikes and everything outside...they can't even leave nothing outside because it disappears," he said.

While we were at Clark Street, 2 on Your Side discovered a man coming out of the vacant house with arms full of metal.

He was happy to share with us why he thinks what he's doing is okay.

"[The house] has been sitting for so long. Nobody...the city doesn't want it, the person who owns it doesn't want it. If he wanted it, he would be here renting it out or living in it," he said.

Marc Benton is 45 years old.

He said he's had trouble finding and keeping a job lately, and that this is one way for him to make a few bucks, and he says he's not alone

"You can actually watch every shopping cart come in at the junkyard. You know what we've been doing, you know what we're doing. And the police see us all the time, they know what we've doing," he said.

Benton isn't worried about getting in trouble because he says police tell him vacant homes like 28 Clark Street are coming down anyway.

Common Council member David Franczyk, who covers that district, showed WGRZ e-mails between his staff discussing their recent inspection of the property and when it will come down.

City spokesperson Mike DeGeorge says it's going out for bid to contractors and will be torn down by the end of the month.

Martinez says he's just glad something is finally being done about it.

DeGeorge said, since 2006, the city has demolished about 5,000 structures including homes and buildings. He said there are approximately another 5,000 to go.


To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment
More Stories