Village still looking for Pike Brook dam taker

T he village continues to look for someone to purchase the Pike Brook dam property but has yet to find a taker.

Trustee Ken Bartholomew said last week that several people have expressed interest in the property but most have backed off once they learned of mandated repairs the dam needs.

“Several people have looked at it, but they get scared off because of the dam and the regulations,” Bartholomew said.

It appeared the village was getting close to finding a buyer in the last few weeks, but the interested party backed off amid concerns that a neighboring property owner was threatening the village with legal action.

Bartholomew said no one is taking legal action against the village and he was writing a letter to the Realtor to explain that. He said someone was upset with the village for some trees that had been removed and the village was working to rectify the situation.

The dam became an issue after the failure of the Hadlock Dam in Fort Ann several years ago.

That disaster, which resulted in the destruction of multiple homes and washed-out road surfaces, compelled inspectors to take a closer look at dams throughout the state as well as pass tougher, more stringent legislation.

The Pike Brook dam, which is located on a picturesque, 18-acre plot of land on Pike Brook Road, was inspected by the Department of Environmental Conservation, which mandated maintenance repairs that could cost the village nearly $500,000.

Instead of fixing the dam at that price, the village listed the property for sale but it has yet to attract a buyer.

The land has been listed for $49,900.

“It’s a $50,000 piece of property with a half-million (dollar) problem,” Bartholomew said.

The repairs could be made for less by a private owner because they aren’t held to same standards as a municipality that must pay prevailing wages.

The dam was been built around 1924 and is roughly 30 feet high and 75 feet across, and made entirely of concrete. Bartholomew said the dam has about 2.6 million gallons of water behind it.

The dam was primarily used as a back-up source of drinking water but hasn’t been used in over 30 years.

Most of the area surrounding the dam is undeveloped.

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