Posted at: 11/26/2012 12:07 AM
By: Dan Levy
KINDERHOOK - They're probably the most visible buildings in Kinderhook, on the town's busiest street, at the town's most heavily traveled intersection.
The commercial buildings at number 4 and 6 Broad Street were under renovation and unoccupied. The flames were shooting through windows and the roof when firefighters arrived just after 5:00 P.M. Sunday night.
"We had fire rolling out of the top of the two buildings," said Kinderhook Fire Chief Peter Hunter.
Town residents gathered at Apple Pie Square to watch a part of their history go up in smoke.
"As children, we were always going up street," said Katie Pesano, a lifelong town resident, who lives across the street from the fire scene. "That was the ice cream parlor, and then the liquor store, and then the butcher store. I'd rather it be my house then my town. It's like having your old history gone."
"It's going to be like missing a tooth in a smile," is how Fire Chief Pete Hunter described the new look of Broad Street (U.S. Route 9).
Hunter says workers had been doing some interior remodeling earlier in the day, but the official cause of the fire was under investigation Sunday night.
Even though the two historic buildings were destroyed, all the surrounding buildings were able to be saved, including the old Dutch Inn next door (8 Broad Street), which is currently under renovations of its own.
"Lucky thing we had tonight, it wasn't freezing rain and we had very little wind," Hunter said, "If we had wind it probably would have been a totally different story, probably more loss then we did (have)."