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Safety scaffolding planned around Point Lookout's historic Ye Olde Firehouse

The Lido and Point Lookout Fire District on

The Lido and Point Lookout Fire District on June 2, 2013. Photo Credit: Ed Betz

Scaffolding is going up on two sides of the Depression-era Ye Olde Firehouse in Point Lookout for safety reasons, fire officials said.

"We had a report from our inspector about its possible danger, and then . . . the Town of Hempstead confirmed that it might be unsafe," Andrew Richter, a commissioner with the Lido and Point Lookout Fire District, said Wednesday.

The scaffolding will cost just more than $12,000 for three months and $150 a week afterward, until it's removed, he said. The decision for the safety additions at the corner of Lido Boulevard and Hewlett Avenue was reached Tuesday night at a fire district meeting.

The building closed in 2011. It was later damaged by superstorm Sandy. Richter said the district is talking with two architects about the site "but we have no idea what we will finally do with the building."

A proposal to demolish it was part of a bond referendum for expansion of district space that failed resoundingly in early 2013. A bond referendum for expansion that did not include tearing down the firehouse failed seven months later.

"The demolition was not a part of that referendum, but some people thought it was," Don Kelly, president of the Point Lookout Property Owners Association, said Thursday.

Kelly, whose group has been trying to get the firehouse designated as a historic site by the Town of Hempstead, said association members were not invited to the meeting.

"I didn't know about it until afterward," he said, adding that the association has wanted to meet with the district on the designation issue. Kelly said he was notified early Tuesday by the district's lawyer it "has nothing to discuss" with the group. Richter was unavailable for comment Thursday.

Kelly said the firehouse was never used by firefighters.

"It was a community center, given to the fire department in 1994 and still never used as a firehouse. It should get historical status and return to being a community center," he said.

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