What next? Clean-up progresses; no firm plan on future of buildings

A s village employees built a fence around the pile of charred debris on Main Street that was recently two buildings, one of the former owners was already looking to get it cleared up.

“The goal is to get that cleaned up and finished very quickly,” said Constance Rojcewicz, owner of the building that housed All In One Exchange pawn shop. “Let’s clean it up, so it’s not a huge mess on Main Street.”

Rojcewicz, who currently lives in Hilo, Hawaii, was born and raised in Hartford. She used to live in one of the upstairs apartments and owned and operated an H&R Block office that had been on the first floor until 2003.

“It was my home, kind of,” Rojcewicz said.

Mayor Brian LaRose said only time will tell what will become of the newly-emptied space that was created after a Nov. 12 fire.

“Until the owners decide what they’re going to do, it’s kind of up in the air,” LaRose said.

At this point, Rojcewicz has not thought further than removing the pile of ruins. She said she is in the process of accepting bids for insurance companies from local contractors, and wants to get the clean-up finished before winter weather sets in.

“I’m afraid if it waits too long, it’ll become even harder to deal with,” Rojcewicz said.

LaRose believes the two parcels of land, one that was occupied by Rojcewicz’s building and another that was the former L.E. Roberts jewelry store, are too small to do anything with individually. He thinks one of the two owners, Rojcewicz and Beverly Koffler, may have to buy out the other if either wants to rebuild.

Otherwise, LaRose speculated, the village may purchase the lots and turn them into a green space or something else.

On the day of the fire, Koffler said she was devastated to lose the old building and hundreds of pieces of artwork and other valuables. She had been renovating the building and was planning on eventually retiring with her husband in one of the upstairs apartments.

“It’s a very tragic event for the main street of Granville and for the people who lived there,” Koffler said.

Though she wasn’t in town for the fire, Rojcewicz thought it was a terrible event.

“It’s pretty devastating, especially for the people that were in there,” Rojcewicz said. She was grateful for the efforts of many local firemen and others.

“The volunteer fire department there, and their ability to keep things under control was amazing. I appreciate all the help of the fire departments and the village,” she said.

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