June 16, 2010, Schenectady, N.Y., — Schenectady County officials today announced that 17 projects are underway or are completed as part of an expansion of the County’s facade improvement program.
“Job creation and economic revitalization continue to be our focus” said Susan E. Savage, Chairwoman of the Schenectady County Legislature. “Our Main Streets send an important message about the economic condition of our community. That is why it is important to invest in them. Schenectady County has undergone a rebirth in the last six years and our Main Streets should reflect that vitality.”
Last year, the County worked with Metroplex to expand the façade program, which originally served only the downtown and the Upper Union Street areas, to include other key commercial corridors in Schenectady County. Metroplex approved $600,000 in funding for the expanded façade program.
The facade program provides matching grants to businesses to encourage them to undertake renovation projects. The result is stronger commercial districts, more sales, more jobs and an improved image for Schenectady County.
Schenectady County is working closely with the Chamber of Schenectady County and River Street Planning & Development to implement the expanded facade program.
“The program has worked very well in downtown Schenectady and in Upper Union Street. Expanding it to include other commercial area was the next logical step in our economic development efforts,” said Ray Gillen, Chair of Metroplex and Commissioner of Economic Development in Schenectady County.
In the Village of Scotia, five façade projects have moved forward including:
— 40 Mohawk Avenue in Scotia. The Turf Tavern is a long-standing and popular dining spot in the Village. The restaurant’s exterior has been totally redone.
— 108 Mohawk Avenue. This property is owned by Scotia Motors. Previously it was used as a parts warehouse. The exterior and interior of the building has been completely renovated. The building is now home to Shop Talk Salon. The much improved façade greatly adds to the streetscape in Scotia.
— 110 Mohawk Avenue. This building houses Scotia Motors which has been located in the Village since 1946. The building features improvements to the façade.
— 106 Mohawk Avenue. A beautiful new façade greets customers at Village Vacuum and Rhythm Section, a local music store.
— 117 Mohawk Avenue. The Scotia Cinema attracts a large number of movie-goers to the Village. The theater opened in 1929 and has been operated by the current owner since 1981. The project involves improvements to the façade and marquee.
Also in the Village of Scotia, Schenectady County was successful in negotiating an agreement with the McDonald’s Corporation to demolish a long-vacant store on Mohawk Avenue. The site will be landscaped and marketed by McDonalds to other retailers improving a key parcel on this commercial corridor.
In the Town of Glenville, 165 Freeman’s Bridge Road was completely redone creating six distinct facades for six different businesses that occupy the building resulting in a dramatic improvement to the exterior of this structure.
In the Town of Duanesburg, the Century 21 office and the Weitz Medical Office at 5099 and 5083 Western Turnpike saw new facades and exterior renovations improve two key buildings along the main business corridor. In addition, the County was able to work out an agreement with DEC to demolish the long vacant Marks Property which was a major eyesore. The Marks structure was located at the intersection of Routes 7 and 20 – a key parcel in the Town’s main business corridor.
In the Town of Rotterdam a number of projects will help to improve the Hamburg Street corridor:
–3125 Carman Road. Towne TV is planning a major upgrade of its exterior and façade.
–1870 Hamburg Street. Friends Lumber is planning to use the façade program as part of its renovation plans.
–2688 Hamburg Street. The Redwood Diner plans to use the façade program as part of a renovation project.
–3049 Hamburg Street. Tina King’s Hair Studio is planning an upgrade to the façade.
Along the Van Vranken business corridor in the City of Schenectady, five façade upgrades have been completed at:
–1859 Van Vranken. Stoney Lane Grill completely rehabbed their exterior with new windows, new façade and signage.
–1825-29 Van Vranken. Two businesses – Greenwave and Goose Hill Barbershop re-did their front façade including new signage and awnings.
–1559 Van Vranken. Rehabilitation Support Services completed a façade upgrade and plan to install new signage and awnings this summer.
–535 Nott Street. The very popular Peter Pause Restaurant plans to improve their façade this year.
–557 Nott Street. Visage, a popular hair studio has improved its front façade which faces Union College and Nott Street.