Who needs Hollywood when you have Schenectady? At least that's what one West Coast production company and Rotterdam developer are hoping by proposing a brand new, state of the art film and television studio. Karen Tararache has more on the details of this massive downtown development project.
SCHENECTADY, N.Y. -- Mayor Gary McCarthy feels, "Its a grossly underutilized riverfront piece of property."
You've probably driven past it dozens of times and never thought twice about the land that sits right on the Mohawk River. In the 1900s, the American Locomotive Company was a bustling plant, but now all that's left is just dirt and shrub. That's all set to change.
"We've been working with a number of options. The Galesi Group is the primary developer of the site and we are excited to have the possibility of bringing Pacifica Ventures to the community," McCarthy said.
Rotterdam based developers Galesi Group bought the 60 acre site for half a million dollars three years ago. Their goal is to build residences, a hotel, shops and even a marina for recreational activities on the Mohawk River.
Jim Salengo, the Executive Director of the Downtown Schenectady Improvement Cooperation, said, "The concept of a project like this happening right on the edge of downtown Schenectady would be extremely exciting."
But it's talk of a 200,000 square foot television and film studio built by a West Coast production company that really has the BID really seeing stars.
Salengo adds, "Schenectady is synonymous with an institution like Proctors Theater, which really has become not only a theater in Schenectady, but a regional arts institution, so having the possibility of a major production studio adding to the arts community would be a huge benefit for the downtown, the whole region."
Fifteen million dollars in grant funding from the Capital Region Economic Development Council still needs to be approved, but Mayor McCarthy says this would be a fantastic addition for not only the Electric City, but all of New York.
"We're excited to have Schenectady, hopefully, be the home of this facility but it would have a regional impact," McCarthy said.