VIDEO: Glass Bank Building Features Rich History
By Space Coast Daily // June 10, 2014
originally gave the city’s skyline a 'modern look'
ABOVE VIDEO: The Glass Bank is now one step closer to demolition as lawyers for the estate of Frank Wolfe informed Cocoa Beach city officials that they will not contest a lawsuit seeking to demolish the landmark. Wolfe built a two-story penthouse on top of the original structure and lived there until his death last February. (Video by Bobby Freeman)
BREVARD COUNTY • COCOA BEACH, FLORIDA – The landmark building on Cocoa Beach now known as the “The Glass Bank” was built in 1961 as a First Federal Savings and Loan. It was said at the time that the structure gave the city’s skyline a “modern look.”
The building was nicknamed “The Glass Bank” because the original structure’s exterior was entirely glass windows.
At that time, the top floor was occupied by “Ramon’s Rainbow Room,” a restaurant and nightclub which played host to national politicians, astronauts and Hollywood stars – and was known for its great food and atmosphere.
BUILDING ONE STEP CLOSER TO DEMOLITION
The building is now one step closer to demolition as lawyers for the estate of Frank Wolfe last week informed Cocoa Beach city officials that they will not contest a lawsuit seeking to demolish the landmark.
Wolf built a two-story penthouse on top of the original structure and lived there until his death last February.
According to the Brevard County Medical Examiner’s Office, Wolfe, 82, died from a self-inflicted gunshot on the Glass Bank property in front of his garage. Longtime friend Bob Baugher said he believes that Wolfe went to the Glass Bank the same day and was unable to access his home because the power had been cut off.
The building’s last tenants were Huntington Bank on the first floor, an Atlantic Nautilus fitness center on the upper floors and Wolfe who had built the penthouse atop of the building. After falling into serious disrepair as a result of Hurricane Frances in 2004, the businesses on the bottom were forced to move out, but Wolfe remained.
A legal battle ensued between Wolfe and the Glass Bank Condominium Association, which oversaw the rest of the building and wanted it torn down.
Despite the fact that the bottom half of the building was in disrepair, Wolfe’s penthouse was in immaculate condition. The City of Cocoa Beach became concerned with the lower floor’s broken windows, leaky roofing, mold and asbestos.
Following a year-long dispute about what to do with the building, a three-judge appellate court panel affirmed that Wolfe owed millions of dollars for assessments, fees and repairs to majority owner Joseph Yossifon.
In January, the condo association signed an agreement with Cocoa Beach officials to let the city declare the structure a nuisance, demolish it, clear it, and then have the owners pay back the costs of the demolition within three years. Wolfe rejected the proposal, but a court ruling in February cleared the way for the association to begin foreclosure proceedings against Wolfe.
The day following the court hearing, Wolfe was found dead in front of the Glass Bank by a self-inflicted gunshot wound.