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August 16, 2012

 

Camp Georgetown up for sale

Former state prison will be put up for auction on Sept. 11

CampBob Ellis/staff photographer
A group of interested buyers tours Camp Georgetown Wednesday during an open house. The state-owned, 38-building property on 31 acres at 3191 Crumb Hill Road will be sold to the highest bidder in a September auction. The state closed the minimum security prison last August.

By NEIL BENJAMIN JR.
Staff Reporter
nbenjamin@cortlandstandardnews.net

GEORGETOWN — Camp Georgetown, a former minimum-security prison closed by New York state in 2011, is being put up for auction on Sept. 11.
The state-owned, 38-building property that sits on 31 acres at 3191 Crumb Hill Road will be sold to the highest bidder.
The second of four open houses was held Wednesday at the sprawling property, with the last two set for Aug. 23 and 28.
Two men who are considering buying the property together attended Wednesday’s guided tour, but would not identify themselves to a reporter.
While on the tour, one of the men suggested a few ideas as to what the property could become.
“It would be a great place for an art colony,” the man said. “Or it could be a retreat or even an assisted-living facility.”
A large indoor gym with two basketball hoops that was built a few years ago is an attractive feature, the man added, as are the outside recreational features like a baseball field and another basketball court.
There is one access point to the property: Crumb Hill Road, which runs through Madison and Chenango counties, from the village of DeRuyter to Route 26.
Opened in 1961, Camp Georgetown features an onsite water distribution system with three drilled wells and a 150,000-gallon water tank.
There is a permitted wastewater treatment plant, underground sanitary sewer piping and 10 petroleum storage tanks.
The camp’s capacity, before it was closed to save money, was 260 inmates, housed in large rooms with double bunk beds. Though it was a prison, the property was not fenced in.
“Most of the people who were here were nearing the end of their sentences,” said Robert VanDeloo, a real estate specialist with the state Office of General Services. “They knew if they ran (tried to escape), they’d get seven years added to their sentence, and they weren’t stupid enough to try.”
Even if they did, it’s a wonder where they would go. Surrounding the land are four large state forests: Muller Hill (3,090 acres), Mariposa (3,002 acres), Buck Brook (2,178 acres) and Beaver Meadow (5,816 acres), according to information provided by the state.
“There’s potential for a business here,” VanDeloo added. “It’s a huge place and the buildings are in good shape.”
There’s even a chapel onsite, but it wasn’t available for viewing Wednesday because it is boarded up.
One drawback is that the state says there is a potential for asbestos due to the age of some of the buildings. It warns that potential buyers should investigate the environmental condition as it relates to conceptual reuse or redevelopment designs. The state also says it will help with reasonable accommodations to access the property for survey.
The last two tours of the prison property are scheduled for Aug. 23 and 28. Additional tours will be held by appointment by calling the state Office of General Services at 518-474-2195.
The auction is scheduled for noon on Sept. 11 at the Utica State Office Building’s Conference Room A, at 207 E. Genesee St. in Utica.
Registration, which begins at 11:30 a.m. and is open to anyone who meets the requirements of a $39,000 deposit in the form of a certified bank check or bank draft made payable to yourself. The starting bid is $390,000.

 

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