Developers present public safety building plans

The downtown area of Saratoga Springs could undergo a substantial facelift in coming years if the city decides to pursue plans to build a public safety building and parking garage in the High Rock parking lot. The city recently asked developers to provide plans for those structures and surrounding city-owned land, and three responded.

Two of those proposals also feature a cinema, housing and retail spaces in the area near City Hall. According to those developers, the best way to pay for a multi-million dollar police station will be to institute paid parking in either the new garage or throughout downtown.

The developers presented their visions to the city council and the public on Friday, Nov. 21. All three would lock the city into a 30-year lease, at which point the garage and public safety building would be sold to Saratoga Springs for $1.

Yorkshire's bare-bones bid

Clifton Park-based Yorkshire Properties presented a conservative option to the city that includes only a 600-space parking garage and public safety building.

Yorkshire proposed three designs for the police station. A three-story building with a court system built in would cost the city $1.093 million in annual debt service; leaving the courts out and making the third floor a shell would amount to a $998,000 price tag; and building a simpler, two-story structure and leaving the courts at City Hall would amount to $862,000 in annual debt service.

The Phinney Design Group presented a building that adhered to the architectural style of Saratoga Springs, with neoclassical and gothic influences. There would be a port for official vehicles and the loading and unloading of prisoners.

The parking garage would cost $1.093 million annually, and could also be built with five stories rather than three, leaving a small parcel at the south end of the High Rock lot for further development.

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