LE ROY – A three-story hotel whose tavern predates this village’s founding is finally doomed after three years of discussion, debate and uncertainty.
The Wiss Hotel, named for 19th century owner John Wiss, has stood for well over a century at Le Roy’s main intersection, Routes 5 and 19. It has been vacant for nearly a decade and has slowly deteriorated.
Despite attempts by a small group of preservationists, the Village Board voted 3-2 to demolish it. A meeting will be held next month to lay out final plans. However, a bid for demolition at a cost of $132,000 from Empire Dismantlement Corp. of Grand Island has been awarded.
Mayor Gregory Rogers said Friday that the 25-room hotel probably will come down in late April. A partial basement would have to be leveled.
The sagging structure – its marquee long gone and its interior gutted of ornate woodwork and furnishings – was acquired by the village years ago through foreclosure proceedings.
Many feel the long-abandoned eyesore should be used for better purposes. Across the street, a modern Walgreens drugstore with on-site parking replaced ancient buildings, including a historic meeting hall.
The corner had seen a succession of taverns until Wiss bought the property in 1869. Interior furnishings, including an ornate bar, have been long gone. LeRoy New York LLC wanted to purchase the property and convert it into stores and apartments.
The Village Board was concerned about potential liability from a brick-faced structure that looms over sidewalks on busy Main and Lake streets.