City OKs $1M deal to demo parking garage

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In perhaps the most substantive step foward in the city’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) thus far, the Board of Estimate and Contract has approved a $1 million deal with Bronze Contracting of Remsen for the demolition of the Liberty-George parking garage.

The board, comprised of Mayor Jacqueline M. Izzo, Council President Stephanie Viscelli, and several of the mayor’s department heads, signed off on the contract this morning.

The deal will cover needed asbestos abatement at the site as well as the demolition. The $1,013,143 contract will take up the bulk of the $1.5 million allocated to the Liberty-George garage project under the DRI.

City officials have said that, following demolition, the lot will be used for surface level parking. According to the contract documents, the parking lot will be landscaped with trees and shrubs.

Eventually, City Hall plans to find a developer for the site to build apartments while perserving a public parking section.

In December, the city contracted with Delta Engineers of Vernon for $132,900 for design services related to the demolition.

The board also approved a contract with Ritter and Paratore of Utica for the demolition of the elevated pedestrian walkway from the Liberty-James parking garage to City Hall, another DRI project, for $117,184.

Below the walkway, on a stretch of road that’s unmarked but still considered part of Willett Street, there are plans to “redefine the pavement area as a pedestrian connection,” according to internal city documents. The board approved a $33,200 contract with Delta to repurpose the dead end, and the firm writes in documents that it will consider “seating options,” “public amenities,” and “LED lighting concepts ... for safety and aesthetics” in the area.

Another DRI project will move ahead, as well — the board voted to sign a $2,685 contract for surveying at the West Dominick lot across from City Hall slated for infill, to be carried out by Rome firm Moore Land Surveying.

The long-term vision for the site includes “high-quality commercial and multi-family residential space.”

The board also approved a $45,548.68 contract with Lythia Motors for a forensics van for the Police Department. Police officials have called the current van, a 2003 model, “outdated” and “too small,” and the Common Council voted to bond for the vehicle late last month.

Board members signed off on a $9,500 contract with Plumley Engineering for design of three “rest areas” along the Mohawk River trail, to include “fences/railings, benches and shelters.”

Other contracts approved by the Board of Estimate and Contract Thursday:

A $3,900 contract with Kofile Preservations Services for vital statistics records restoration work.

A $1,950 contract with Moore Land for surveying of the Rome Turney development site at 109 Canal St.

A $1,384.31 contract with Continuum Systems for services related to the recording, managment and storage of emergency radio communications.

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