TICONDEROGA — “Star Trek: The Next Generation” is coming to Ticonderoga.
Soundstages with original and painstakingly recreated items from the TV show will be created in a building next door to the popular “Star Trek: Original Series” venue.
The Original Series building has been a popular tourist attraction, attracting visitors from around the world as well as presentations from many of the actors involved in the show.
“Trek” superfan James Cawley spent 14 years rebuilding the Original Series sets, using original blueprints and thousands of photographs.
Now he’s expanding into “The Next Generation.”
He is acquiring an abandoned building next door, which has been boarded up for years. Essex County is selling the building to Ti Alliance, an economic development group, which is selling it to Cawley for an undisclosed amount.
The building used to be the J.J. Newberry Co., a department store. But it fell into disarray under later owners.
“It’s got a lot of things that have to be done, just to stabilize the building,” Cawley said. “It’s a long process.”
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Work includes replacing the roof and removing debris from the building. He’s already removed the black plywood that adorned the front.
He does not expect to open the first “The Next Generation” set for at least a year, and probably more like 18 months, he said.
He jumped on the chance to acquire the building because it is next door, even though it needs so much work.
“We’re so close to the building that we’re looking to do a walkway between the buildings,” he said. “There really wasn’t any other choice in the area.”
He’s been preparing to expand into “The Next Generation” for a long time.
“I’ve been acquiring stuff for years,” he said. “Adding ‘The Next Generation,’ I see a lot of growth.”
He wouldn’t offer details yet on what set the public will see first.
“The goal is to do the soundstage,” he said.
But then he will add to it over time, as he has for the Original Series. There, visitors can go to the bridge, the transporter room, sickbay and a museum-like area with artifacts from the show.