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And then there was one

High bidder on Curry Road Plaza redevelopment backs out

Rotterdam officials are eager to see Curry Road Plaza be redeveloped after two decades of sitting vacant.

Rotterdam officials are eager to see Curry Road Plaza be redeveloped after two decades of sitting vacant. Photo by John Purcell.

— Schenectady Metroplex Development Authority Chairman Ray Gillen was pleased to see a deal is on the table.

“(Sciocchetti) had the vision to see past the old retail stores that are there shuttered,” Gillen said. “We need more senior housing options for our seniors, so that they stay in Schenectady County.”

Gillen said there are a significant number of seniors in Rotterdam and he hopes they’re excited about the project. He added developers looking to construct senior housing can’t afford to pay too much for property, and the property’s appraisal matches Forum’s offer exactly.

“That is what it is worth to me and to our project,” Sciocchetti said. “Obviously, based on some of the other numbers that came in, it is worth more to someone else if they can do what they want.”

The Whitney Capital Company LLC, of Lake Success, would develop the senior housing, which would include one- and two-bedroom units, a business center, a gym, an outdoor patio and other amenities. Green building practices would be used during construction.

If the deal is passed, demolition is expected to start next year following state and local approvals.

“Our firm is excited about working with Forum Industries, the Town of Rotterdam and Schenectady County to bring new life to this site while also addressing the local need for senior rental housing,” Whitney Capital Managing Director Tom Granville said in a statement.

Of the 12-acre site, approximately 2.5 acres would be preserved as a nature area with trails. The developers would donate 0.27 acres to the Rotterdam Fire District No. 2 for future expansions, too.

Over the last two years, extensive work was completed to make the property a shovel ready site, Gillen said. Earlier this year, the state Department of Environmental Conservation signed off on the environmental clean up of the property.

“There is no issues at all,” Gillen said. “It is also smart growth.”

Redeveloping the plaza had been a priority for the Rotterdam Industrial Development Agency, which was dissolved after the New York State Authorities Budget Office sought to terminate the IDA last year. Ownership of Curry Road Plaza was transferred to the town.

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