Exploring Inside the River Edge American Legion [VIDEO]
Patch editor Eamon Harbord recently toured the interior of the American Legion building
For years the Sgt. Walter Scott Brown American Legion has stood tall and proud on Continental Avenue - but over the past few years the building has changed from what it once was to bordering on something completely different in town.
Of the three floors inside, the basement has been hit the hardest having been ravaged by flooding when the sump pumps stopped working and plagued by mold. The flooring by the basement entrance has peeled up and water stains at least one foot high.
The first and second floors have faired somewhat better with some insullation falling down and chipped paint in the bathroom due to moisture damage. But the building, which is slated to be demolished at some point in the future, is not ADA compliant and may have lead paint and an underground oil tank on the property.
The borough received an inconclusive 329-page document by Brinkerhoof Environmental Services for the River Edge American Legion Phase 1 Environmental Site Assessment, to determine if there is an underground oil tank on site along with any use of lead paint or asbestos inside the building. Brinkerhoof's research and their $2400 report resulted in finding no historical data to prove the existence of the three environmental concerns.
The Dutch Colonial-style building is approximately between 80 to 90 years old. An estimate received by architect Peter Pulice put renovation costs running between $300,000 to $1.3 million. Currently the borough is awaiting a report by borough engineer Robert Costa regarding demolition specifications for removing the American Legion and include the estimated costs for removing any lead paint and asbestos.