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Why this construction container in Owego is causing controversy

OWEGO (WBNG) — A spray painted construction container is serving as an office for Nelson Development Group as it remodels an apartment on the second floor of the former Jail House in Owego.

“At the last board meeting, which was Monday night, the mayor asked if the individual had permission and I told him yes, that I had authorized it,” Superintendent of Public Works Jeff Soules said. “That’s all there is to it. Unless the Village Board asks me to move it, it’s going to stay there.”

Located at the corner of Court and Main streets, the container is in the in a three hour parking zone. It does not have a formal permit to be there since the project is only expected to last two to three weeks.

“If it’s a long term thing, we actually make them do a permit,” Soules said. “But if it’s just a short term thing, it’s just a verbal permit, I guess we will call it.”

Soules said Nelson had to provide proof of insurance to get the verbal permit. The container’s status and location is no different than a dumpster used for construction. It has electricity and is lit up at night to help alert drivers.

“As long as it is in a parking spot I don’t (have a problem),” Soules said. “I talked to DOT, originally they thought it was too close to the signs directing you to 17C or 38 and 96, so we had the individual move it back so that you can see the sign, and I haven’t heard anything.”

12 News reached out to Nelson Development Group for comment but did not receive a response.

Brendan Tierney

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