GLENS FALLS The partners of JMZ Architects and Planners and the owners of Davidson Brothers restaurant want to add a “European feel” to the Exchange Street walkway between their two buildings in downtown.
The two property owners have applied to the city for permission to install strings of LED lights between the two buildings, at a height of about 16 feet.
The city Common Council must approve the plan, because the walkway is city property.
The Planning Board will first review the plan, and make a recommendation to the Common Council.
“We think it will add a European feel to improve the plaza, enhance the connection between Glen Street and the businesses on Exchange Street, and make the plaza safer and more exciting year-round,” said Tenee Casaccio, president of JMZ.
The partners of JMZ recently formed Fowler Building Associates, a limited liability corporation that bought the historic B.B. Fowler Building at 190 Glen St., where the architectural firm has its offices on the second and third floors.
Casaccio said recently the partners are close to leasing the ground floor space to a tenant who would operate a restaurant and movie theater business, similar to the former Aimie’s Dinner & Movie.
The walkway between the two buildings is the main pedestrian connection between Glen Street and Exchange Street, which leads to Elm Street and Hudson Avenue on the west side of downtown.
The walkway is expected to have increased pedestrian traffic when developer Sonny Bonacio’s mixed-use commercial and apartment complex is built next to Glens Falls Hospital.
The owners of the two buildings will pay for the cost of installing and operating the lighting.
“The lighting will enhance the dining experience of our patrons and reinforce the plaza as the heart of downtown,” said John Davidson, co-owner of Davidson Brothers.
In past years, Davidson clashed with the previous owners of the B.B. Fowler building — Kerry Metiver and his wife, Sandy — over use of the walkway for outdoor dining.
Peter Aust, president and chief executive officer of Adirondack Regional Chamber of Commerce, praised the lighting project.
“Not only will it make the plaza and entire street an inviting place to congregate in the evenings, it will add to the developing cachet that downtown Glens Falls is truly becoming the ‘place to be,’” he said.
EDC Warren County President Edward Bartholomew; Glens Falls Business Improvement District Chairman Dan Burke; developer Peter Hoffman; Lower Adirondack Regional Arts Council Executive Director Ellen Butz; and Tim Reed, owner of Reeds art and artisan boutique on Exchange Street, also have endorsed the project, according to a news release.