.

Old Acme Demolition: 'Tear Down These Walls'

Demolition on the Acme building on Sycamore Street in Newtown began after a party Saturday morning.

 

Saturday morning's demolition of the old Sycamore Street Acme was a moment that Mick Petrucci, a Newtown resident and president of the Newtown Business Association, has been waiting to happen for years.

"I've had many, many phone calls and late night meetings with people wanting to know why I couldn't do anything to take this building down," Petrucci said to the over 1,000 people who gathered outside the long-abandoned grocery store. "I'm personally happy today."

With that, the business association president said, "Mr. Worthington, tear down these walls!"

Jim Worthington, a managing partner for development project that will be built at the site, thanked township officials and residents for their help and patience with the project. "I'm sure you guys are tired of looking at it," he added, drawing cheers from the crowd. 

Newtown Township Board of Supervisor's Chairman Mike Gallagher used a wrecking ball attached to a piece of heavy equipment to punch the first hole in the side of the building. Less than an hour later, professional demolition crews had taken down much of the brick and mortar building.

"My father always told me when I was growing up that 'good things come to those who wait.' And a very good thing is about to happen here," Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick said at the demolition party. 

The demolition was the first step toward construction of the The Promenade, a mixed-use retail and residential development, that will anchor the site.

After the remains of the Acme are cleared, crews will assess whether construction on the new development should begin in fall or in the spring.

Plans for The Promenade feature 20,000 square feet of retail space and 26 high-end rental apartments. As per a restriction requested by Newtown Township, no full-service restaurants with liquor licenses will be permitted in the development.

Attendees of the Saturday demolition event donned yellow plastic hardhats that marked the occasion. Corner Bakery Cafe was on-hand and provided light refreshments to the crowd.

Linda Mitchell, an organizer of the event and public relations director for the Newtown Athletic Club, introduced a handful of former store employees who shared their memories and had photographs taken in front of the store before demolition began.

"This is a great day for Newtown's history," Petrucci said.

 

What are your thoughts on the demolition of the old Acme? What do you think about The Promenade project? Tell us in the comment section.

 

Let Patch save you time. Get local stories like this delivered right to your inbox or smartphone every day with our free newsletter. Simple, fast sign-up here.

Tom Sofield September 22, 2012 at 10:39 PM
We want to see your Acme Demo snaps! Add your photos and/or videos by clicking the "Upload Photos and Video" button above this article. Here are some photos of what the store looked like inside - http://acmestyleblog.blogspot.com/2009/08/abandoned-acme-newtown-pa.html
Man Landers September 22, 2012 at 11:37 PM
What a great moment for the veteran Acme employees. Very classy day. Exceeded all of my expectations. The babe holding the Promenade sign was an added bonus. :)
Jordan September 23, 2012 at 01:06 PM
Was the asbestos taken out of the building prior to today? If not, its scary that they demoed this in front of a huge crowd with only one fire hose to attempt to keep that out if the air.
Tom Sofield September 23, 2012 at 01:43 PM
From what I've been told, yes.
Jacki Pitkow September 23, 2012 at 02:09 PM
I doubt a prominent business like the NAC would put anyone in danger. Also, I am pretty sure I read the EPA was already involved with the process of taking this building down.
Linda Mitchell September 23, 2012 at 05:41 PM
Yes, the asbestos was cleaned up prior to this. There was absolutely no danger to anyone. Thanks for your vote of confidence Jackie.
Pat September 24, 2012 at 12:29 AM
Is it me or is most of the building still standing. I call this a fail.
Jacki Pitkow September 24, 2012 at 12:43 AM
Of course Linda! ;)
Linda Mitchell September 28, 2012 at 04:36 PM
Hi Pat - The building was not intended to come down in one day. It is safer to tear it down over several days. There is much organization required of the remaining steel and debris that takes about a week or more to deal with. Today is Friday 9/28 and I've been told most of the building is gone. Linda Mitchell, Dir or Marketing and PR
Delancey Misery December 10, 2012 at 09:46 PM
i notice that gallagher didn't respond......me thinks me smells a rat (or a mcgrath buddy on the baord)

Boards

More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something