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ROTTERDAM: Plaza heading back to tax rolls

Columbia Development Companies proposes to build a 9,000- square-foot professional building for medical uses and retail space. The remaining .27 acres would be subdivided and dedicated to the fire district to allow the firehouse to expand.

Traditional Builders and New York Development Group also proposed a mixed-use center with 2.5 acres dedicated to 30 condominium units, 2.5 acres dedicated to a professional building, 3.5 acres for a commercial building and 1 acre for a passive-use park.

The one dissenting voice on the town board, Robert Godlewski, has many concerns about all three proposals. He still believes the town should consider using the land to consolidate the town's services by possibly building a new town hall and police station, which, Godlewski said, was the town's plan four years ago when it purchased the land.

Rotterdam's current town hall is 70 years old, according to Godlewski, and the town has no long-term facilities plan to manage its aging facilities.

Godlewski wants to see a referendum vote on Nov. 8 to let the public decide if the town should give up the land.

"Right now we are a real estate broker and that's not the position the town should be in," Godlewski said. "I wish the taxpayers would come to a board meeting so we know how they feel. I have no way of measuring that I don't want someone to come back and say, why did we get rid of that land?"

Godlewski is also worried that each proposal involves relocating the Trustco Bank and the Golub Corp.'s print shop. He worries that it would cost the town too much in litigation to manage that.

"It's easy to say we've got to put it back on the tax rolls, but what is it going to cost in litigation?" Godlewski said.

Tommasone said getting the Curry Road property back on the tax rolls is evidence that his administration is working to improve the town.

"I am looking forward to getting this project going and see it to completion," he said. "It will show what our administration is all about, which is providing economic development opportunities and more importantly, redeveloping sites first." ""

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