Months after a groundbreaking ceremony was held for a $64 million dollar apartment and commercial development at the former Alexander Lumber yard in downtown Oswego construction has yet to begin. Instead, the property sits vacant, surrounded by a chain-link fence.
The delay in the start of work on The Reserve at Hudson Crossing at Washington (Route 34) and Harrison streets is due to the developers, The Shodeen Group of Geneva, experiencing difficulty in securing financing for the project, Daniel DiSanto, village administrator, said during an Oswego Chamber of Commerce legislative forum held Monday afternoon, Aug. 12, at the Oswego Public Library District's Montgomery Campus Library in Montgomery.
"It is frustrating for us," DiSanto said of the construction delay. "We approved construction contracts...back in April for the project, and they (Shodeen) are still trying to finalize their financing. It's two years just working on financing and it has not happened yet."
Shodeen and village officials attended a groundbreaking ceremony for the project in February.
According to DiSanto, Shodeen officials are currently preparing loan documents and are expecting results "any week now."
"But I've also been told that since May, so we wait," he said.
As planned, the multi-story complex will feature approximately 175 luxury apartments, 10,000 square feet of retail space and a restaurant with outdoor dining along Washington Street. The sections of Harrison, Jackson and Adams streets adjoining the site will be rebuilt as part of the project.
Parking decks on the lowest floors of the development will continue to be owned by the village, and the project will provide approximately 320 spaces of free, covered parking for downtown shoppers and diners, according to project plans.
Planning for the project dates to 2016 when he village board voted to establish a downtown TIF (Tax Increment Financing) district for the project to encourage development in the downtown area. Later that year, the village purchased the former Alexander Lumberyard property, and called for bids, eventually choosing Shodeen whose proposal combined the lumberyard with adjacent rental properties to create The Reserve at Hudson Crossing.
Construction on the site is expected to be phased over a period of three years--if and when work begins.