GLENS FALLS — If the Downtown Revitalization Initiative were a board game, the city may be close to having a monopoly on South Street.
The Common Council, at its Tuesday meeting, was expected to approve the purchase of 59-63 South St., which is next to the site where city officials plan to construct the indoor farmers market building, for $600,000. The three-story building, owned since 1986 by Martin and Rose Ann Stalker, currently houses The Daily Double, Tri-County Cab and 10 apartments. It went on the market last month with an asking price of $650,000.
The addition of this building would give the city ownership of the four buildings on one side of South Street, from Broad Street to Elm Street.
Last year, the city purchased the former OTB building at 51-57 South St., which will be home to a planned year-round farmers market, which the city has dubbed the “Market on South Street.”
The city also owns the former Hot Shots building at 45 South St. and the adjacent former garment factory at the corner of Elm and South streets, which was unsuccessfully marketed as business incubator space.
Those two buildings will be sold to private developers.
EDC Warren County President Edward Bartholomew said in a recent interview that work to prepare all these buildings for demolition, including environmental and archaeological studies, is nearly complete. Then, state agencies have to sign off on these reports.
He is expecting that the demolition bids would go on in March. At the same time, the city would send out a request for proposals from developers interested in projects at one of the sites, or all of the sites.
The Common Council would then review those proposals during the second half of 2019, according to Bartholomew. Council members would be interested in hearing about what the proposed uses are, such as retail, commercial, residential, number of jobs created, the overall design of the project and whether any tax credits would be sought.
There would be opportunities for public input, Bartholomew added.
He said the designs would have to fit in with the character of the area. The projects would still have to go before the city Planning Board and Zoning Board of Appeals, if any variances are sought.