Building, deemed unsafe, closes part of street in Greenville

building collapse closes part of street in greenville, pa
Main Street in Greenville, Pa., after its initial closure in September 2015

GREENVILLE, Pa. (WKBN) – Greenville city leaders have decided to close a stretch of Main Street Thursday after a building there was found to be structurally unsound.

David Ho, who owns the Straits Settlement building on Main Street according to city leaders, met with owners of neighboring businesses to discuss the caving-in of the roof. The group did not allow WKBN Reporter Derrick Lewis to enter the meeting.

City leaders said they are concerned that the building may completely collapse, and they worry about citizens’ safety.

The road closure is causing an inconvenience to drivers and businesses ahead of the busy holiday weekend. Drivers are forced to take a detour.

Disalvo’s magazine store sits across the street from Straits Settlement. It is one off the hardest hit by the road closure.

“Friday is usually my busiest day. We are down to about 30 percent right now from a normal day,” said Heath Disalvo, Greenville News Depot. “I am going to have to go over finances, possibly lay off workers and work the whole store by myself.”

Borough manager Jasson Urey says he was notified by the building’s engineer that the roof was not in good shape. He said there was no choice but to close down the area for safety.

“They didn’t give us time to prepare. They just closed the street yesterday with no warning, so here we are,” Disalvo said.

State Rep. Mark Longietti, (D) 7th District, said officials have to react to that type of information. He also understands this is hurting business.

“People that have businesses here need the exposure, need access to their buildings in order to survive and to compete as a business,” Longietti said.

Longietti says the borough has done a good job providing detours for the community, but a solution needs to come sooner than later. Officials agree.

Urey said his office is working with Ho to determine what to do with the structure.

WKBN 27 First News reached out to Ho for comment, but he wasn’t available. Ho hosted a meeting with local business owners at his office Friday. Attempts to enter that meeting were not successful. A woman at the door would not give a reason for the closed door meeting.

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