Work is underway to construct a new warehouse and refurbish a Vestal hardware store in the aftermath of a massive fire.

The Home Central store at Stage Road and Main Street has been closed since the February 13 blaze.

The fire destroyed a large wood storage facility on the east side of the Home Central complex. The retail store sustained heavy smoke and water damage.

A representative of the Vestal store said plans call for a bigger warehouse and a new showroom. Construction work at the site started a couple of weeks ago.

A new warehouse will be built on the site of a storage building that was destroyed by fire last winter. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

Employees of a paving company were busy Thursday preparing to resurface the store parking lot. Workers also were on top of the retail building removing the roof to prepare to install insulation.

Plans call for the Vestal store to reopen by the end of the year.

50-year-old Richard Millard of Vestal, who worked at the store, has admitted setting the fire. He pleaded guilty in Broome County Court in August to second-degree arson. He is scheduled to be sentenced next month.

Workers were preparing to repave a parking lot at the Vestal Home Central store on October 8, 2020. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)
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