Shelton's Howe Avenue site, once devastated by fire, has new owner

The burned remains of Shelton's Howe Avenue fire that occured in January 2014.

The burned remains of Shelton’s Howe Avenue fire that occured in January 2014.

Hearst Connecticut Media file photo

SHELTON — A Howe Avenue property — an empty lot for seven years since a fire destroyed the building — has a new owner.

The city’s Downtown Development Director Ken Nappi, at the Planning and Zoning Commission meeting Tuesday, confirmed that 434 Howe Ave., is under new ownership.

Property transfer records show the land, which sits on Howe Avenue across the street from the Derby-Shelton bridge, was sold for $675,000 to 434 Howe Avenue LLC. The LLC is listed out of Norwood, Mass., and the listed principal for the LLC is Daniel D. Riccio, Jr.

The fire ravaged the four-story structure, which was home to Howe Convenience Store, Bob Boroski School of Art, a florist, a barber shop and 27 families who were displaced. The blaze led to the upper levels of the building to collapse, and the structure was later razed, leaving an empty lot in its place.

The fire also forced two restaurants — Liquid Lunch and Joy Lee Chinese — located in the adjacent building to close at that time. That building remains, but now sits vacant.

Nappi told the commission the new owners have not yet offered any plans for the site.

In 2015, plans were approved for a five-story, 49,467-square-foot structure, with five retail spaces on the first floor, six offices on the second floor and 24 apartments on the third through fifth floors.