Demolition crews are doing preliminary work at the site of the former Sheraton Inn hotel on Binghamton's West Side.

Bob Joseph/WNBF News

The Broome County Land Bank Corporation plans to sell the property at 50 Front Street to Newman Development Group of Vestal.

The Binghamton planning commission in June approved a $20 million residential and commercial project for the site.

Heavy equipment owned by Gorick Construction arrived at the site this week. Workers have been removing trees and brush between the building and the Chenango River.

The abandoned building has been the target of vandals in recent years. Graffiti artists frequently have displayed their talents inside and outside the complex. Many of the large windows on the front and rear sides of the seven-story building have been smashed.

Land Bank officials have said they have tried to keep the structure secure but an examination of the property revealed at least two openings where intruders could gain access.

The Sheraton Inn - which had nearly 200 rooms - opened in 1959. The building later was used for various purposes. It most recently housed served as a residence for seniors and people with special needs.

The current demolition schedule for the site is unclear. This week, Mayor Richard David said it was his understanding that work on tearing down the building likely would get underway early next year.

Broome County Land Bank officials did not return calls for information on the planned demolition. Newman Development representatives could not be reached for comment on the project.

Bob Joseph/WNBF News

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