Winthrop Building Inspector James Soper said this week that he is currently satisfied with the progress being made to address the state of disrepair at the Wadsworth Building on Winthrop Street and indicated that for now he has no intention of shutting the building down.
After meeting with the building’s owner and his representatives a little over a week ago, Soper noted that the highest priority repairs are being attended to now and a plan is in place for other repairs to be addressed by a new owner.
“It is my understanding that the building is under agreement for a sale to a new owner, who intends to repair and restore the building, once the sale is finalized,” said Soper. “At this time, the building does not represent an imminent threat to the public.”
Soper indicated that residents and patrons of the building’s various commercial tenants should not feel endangered to walk into the building and he said he is hopeful that the latest development is a sign if better times for the building and the businesses that are located there.
“We never wanted to harm the businesses that are located in the building,” said Soper. “Our concern was to make sure that the deficiencies in the building were addressed to ensure the public safety.”
Between the on-going work that is already underway on the building, and the plans the new owner has for the building, Soper said his concerns with the building are being addressed.
Soper said that he was not at liberty to discuss the reported sale, as the sale has not yet closed, but he did indicate that he had met with the buyer, who wanted to assure him and the town that he had every intention of addressing the building’s physical needs.
Trudy Macero, owner of Winthrop School of Performing Arts, which is housed on the second and third floors of the Wadsworth Building, said the building’s tenants just want residents and patrons to know that the building is safe to be in.
“It’s been a tough summer, with the scaffolding up and the rumors flying about, a lot of our businesses have noticed a drop-off in their business,” said Macero, in a phone interview a week ago. “It’s unfortunate that things had to come to this, but the businesses are happy being here and we’re excited to see that the issues that did arise are going to be addressed.”