Upper Union Street Renovations Completed

Boosts Upper Union Street, Fast Growing Shopping and Dining Destination

October 28, 2011

Schenectady, N.Y., October 28, 2011 — The City of Schenectady, Schenectady County and the Union Street Business Improvement District (BID) today celebrated the completion of a major $4 million renovation project aimed at positioning this key shopping district on the Schenectady-Niskayuna border for further growth.  Already, almost 80 shops, restaurants and retailers are located on Upper Union Street. Together they employ over 650 people.  The project, funded jointly by the City of Schenectady and the Schenectady County Metroplex Development Authority, has transformed Upper Union Street with new landscaping, lighting, curbs, streets and sidewalks.

Acting Mayor Gary McCarthy said, “Upper Union Street looks fantastic.  This is a key gateway to Schenectady and the improvements we funded together with Metroplex and the private sector created a wonderful new look and new appeal for this shopping district as well as the surrounding neighborhood.”

Gary Hughes, Chair of the County Legislature’s Committee on Economic Development and Planning said, “If you want to see smart growth and a great example of Schenectady working together, then you have to look no further than Upper Union Street.  This area is resurgent due to the commitment of local businesses with the support of our unified economic development team.”

“This is a banner day for Upper Union Street,” said BID Chair, Chris DiCocco.  “Upper Union Street is appreciative of the efforts of the City of Schenectady and Schenectady County’s Metroplex Development Authority.  We’re noticing results already.  Business is up, commercial occupancy is up, and the mood on the street is very upbeat.  That’s quite something in challenging economic times.”

The third and final phase of the project cost $650,000 which was split evenly between Metroplex and the City of Schenectady. All of Upper Union Street from Garner Avenue in Schenectady to Van Antwerp Road at the Niskayuna Town line now has a unified look with new sidewalks, trees and new parking areas.  Over the past three years, over $4 million in improvements has been invested in Upper Union Street by the City, Metroplex and private business owners.

“The new streetscape certainly makes Upper Union Street a more attractive place to shop and do business.  It also provides improved safety for pedestrians, drivers, and merchants,” said Nell Burrows, Executive Director of the Upper Union Street BID.  “Having this final phase completed is the icing on our tenth anniversary cake.”

The Upper Union Street BID recently celebrated its tenth anniversary.

Ray Gillen, Metroplex Chair and Commissioner of Economic Development and Planning for Schenectady County said, “The Upper Union Street BID is terrific.  It is a pleasure to work with such a great group of business owners. ”

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