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ChurchJoe McIntyre/staff photographer
City officials say it’s up to property owners to either renovate or raze the vacant church at1 Church St. in Cortland. The 5,000-square-foot building, which dates back to the 1880s, was used by members of the Congregational Church in the 1950s and ’60s.

Abandoned church’s future uncertain

By TYRONE L. HEPPARD
Staff Reporter
The vacant church that has fallen into disrepair at the corner of Church and Elm streets in the city continues to be an eyesore with an uncertain future, but city officials say it is up to the property owners to either renovate or tear down the building.
The building, located at 1 Church St., dates back to the 1880s and was home to members of the Congregational Church in the 1950s and 1960s. The 5,000-square-foot property, assessed at $48,400, was purchased by Stanley Bustamante in 2002.
Bustamante was not available for comment by press time on Friday, but has said in the past that rehabilitating the building is cost prohibitive.
A 2002 report filed with the city’s Code Enforcement Office estimated the cost of renovations to the property would be between $200,000 and $300,000.
Meanwhile, city officials say there is little they can do about the church.

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