OGDENSBURG Atop the new Volunteer Rescue Squad building at 1223 Pickering St. is a 70-foot-high radio antenna tower.
While a radio antenna is a necessity for the squad, its height violates the city code.
While city and squad officials agreed Wednesday the violation was accidentally overlooked when the city approved the squads building plans, the tower is still illegal. A meeting Tuesday of the citys Zoning Board of Appeals to decide whether to grant the squad a variance may settle the issue.
Were going to get it resolved, said Kenneth J. Gardner, the squads director of operations. Were working with the city.
According to the city code, antenna towers in a business district can rise no higher than 48 feet, 22 feet less than the height of the squads tower. Mr. Gardner said the squads revised set of site plans for the new building called for a 48-foot-high metal structure that, to him, was in accordance with code regulations.
The problem was the antenna wasnt included as part of the metal structure.
It was an oversight, Mr. Gardner said, explaining the squads decision to go ahead with the installation. We thought we were all set.
City Code Enforcement Officer Gregg A. Mallette said he could understand how the squad could have had the radio tower installed not knowing it was in violation of city code.
In laymens terms, they put the cart before the horse, he said.
The squads $1.6 million renovation of the former Hacketts Hardware building was scheduled to be completed by last week, but a delay in the delivery of a generator to provide backup power to the building has pushed completion of contractors work back to mid-April.
Renovations began in November. The squad, now located at 101 State St., plans to use about 24,000 square feet of the 59,925-square-foot building. The rest will be left for rent and future expansion.