BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – In October, 2014, a demolition crew was tearing the siding off a house on Wood Avenue, when Mark Paradowski was granted a delay by city officials so he could buy the house, “It was a last second save. The demolition crew was here on site, and did some work.”
It was a puzzling move, since the 100-year-old house was Buffalo’s demolition list, and couldn’t even be sold for the back taxes.
Paradowski grew up a few doors down from the house, and recalled playing with a childhood friend who lived there. He was on a mission to preserve the property, and got the support of Lovejoy Common Councilmember Richard Fontana.
The chairman of Buffalo’s Preservation, Terry Robinson, offered his moral support, “Got good bones, and the interior is in relatively good shape. It is not derelict, it does not seem to pose a danger to the health or safety of the community.”
But the hard part was yet to come, as Mark had to cut through reams of red tape to buy the property, and his initial offer to buy the property was even rejected, because it was too high.
“I put in an offer to purchase it two days after we took our walk through and it still took about two years of paperwork, between getting an inspection, agreeing on a price, approving me, approving the plan.”
Now Mark has turned the project into a labor of love, and plans to restore the 100-year-old house to its original beauty.
“It is going to be amazing. I think it will surprise people that this kind of house is sitting up for demolition, and they are being told that it needs to come down It is going to be a really remarkable house.”
Paradowski is sharing his East Side diamond-in-the-rough with a group of fellow preservationists Friday and Saturday, and to get ideas for restoring the house and to help get the large items of garbage removed from the house out to the curb. The event is posted on Facebook.