QUEENSBURY -- The idea for expanding The Fun Spot’s business came from busy parents, rushing between locations to pick up their children from after-school and day care programs.
The Route 9 amusement center has go-carts, laser tag and miniature golf, and will soon be adding a full-time day care center to its list of offerings. The program will target children ages 3 to 5, and will include some academic components.
“I think that’s needed in today’s society when parents are at work all day,” said Keith Ferraro of The Fun Spot. “They can get out and play and run.”
The Queensbury Planning Board last week approved a roughly 3,500-square-foot addition for the Route 9 business.
The addition will be on the rear of the building and will include three classrooms for the day care program, and will also allow owners to enlarge the arcade and laser tag area, and make it multilevel, Ferraro said.
The Fun Spot already offers summer and after-school programs for children, which are currently state-certified for children aged 5 to 12.
The idea for the day care program came from parents of children in The Fun Spot’s after-school program who hurriedly left after picking up their children to go pick up their younger children from a day care program, Ferraro said.
The program will also bring in more business during weekdays in the school year when business tends to be slow.
Ferraro estimated The Fun Spot will add 10 employees when the expansion project is finished.
The Queensbury Zoning Board of Appeals approved a variance for the project, granting The Fun Spot relief for minimum parking space requirements for buildings with combined uses.
The busiest times for the day care program won’t be during peak hours for the amusement part of the business, which is typically on weekends and afternoons and evenings during the summer. The day care program will be held Monday through Friday.
Construction will begin on the addition in September, and the day care program will also begin in the fall. Existing party rooms can be used as classrooms until the addition is finished, Ferraro said.
The new classrooms will be connected to the rest of the facility, but they will be soundproof and accessible through a separate entrance, Ferraro said.
Several years ago when The Fun Spot’s owners had proposed adding go-carts, neighbors packed the Planning Board meeting, concerned about noise, but no one spoke during a public hearing on the new expansion, board Chairman Chris Hunsinger noted at a meeting last week, after the board approved the expansion.
“They put in the noise-deadening and we didn’t see a single person here tonight,” Hunsinger said. “It speaks volumes for how the process works sometimes.”