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September 23, 2020 - 6:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in city centre, mall, batavia, downtown, video.
Video Sponsor

Consultant Ed Flynn led a City Centre Feasibility Study open house last night, which was an opportunity for community members to weigh in on the future of the mall.

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September 9, 2020 - 10:58am
posted by Press Release in batavia, downtown, business, news.

Press release:

The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) Board of Directors approved incentives for a building renovation project in the City of Batavia at its Sept. 3 board meeting. 

Neppalli Holdings LLC will invest approximately $1.165 million to renovate a three-story building at 99 Main St. in Downtown Batavia. The renovation and redevelopment of the 7,500-square-foot building, which was built in 1865, includes a new storefront, façade, and reconstruction of the existing three floors.

A dental practice will reside on the first floor with the second floor being developed for commercial office space. The third floor will include two two-bedroom market-rate apartments.

Neppalli Holdings LLC is the latest transformational building renovation project to proceed in Downtown Batavia through Governor Cuomo’s $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI).

The project will be receiving sales and mortgage tax benefits totaling $63,500.

September 1, 2020 - 9:42am

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Press release:

The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) Board of Directors will consider final approval for a building renovation project in the City of Batavia at its Sept. 3 board meeting. 

Neppalli Holdings LLC is proposing to invest approximately $1.165 million to renovate a three-story building at 99 Main St. in Downtown Batavia. The renovation and redevelopment of the 7,500-square-foot building, which was built in 1865, would include a new storefront, façade and reconstruction of the existing three floors.

A dental practice will occupy the first floor with the second floor being developed for commercial office space. The third floor will include a pair of two-bedroom market-rate apartments.

Neppalli Holdings LLC is the latest transformational building renovation project to proceed in Downtown Batavia through Governor Andrew Cuomo’s $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI).

The project is requesting sales and mortgage tax benefits totaling $63,500.

The GCEDC Board meeting will take place at 4 p.m. this Thursday. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic the meeting will be conducted via conference and online at www.gcedc.com.

June 7, 2020 - 2:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in March for Justice, batavia, downtown, news.

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More photos from today's March for Justice in Batavia by Philip Casper.

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June 6, 2020 - 8:48pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Main St. Pizza Company, batavia, downtown, business.

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Vic Marchese, owner of Main St. Pizza Company on East Main Street, Batavia, works on a "Black Lives Matter" sign on boards he had placed over a large window on the outside of his restaurant.

Marchese said he doesn't believe anybody locally would harm his business and he doubts agitators from outside our community will come to Batavia for tomorrow's protest, but the window he covered was custom made for his shop and was very expensive. He thought it best to be prepared if there is trouble following the protest.

Main St. Pizza is one of about a dozen businesses in Batavia that decided to board up their windows and doors for Sunday.

The protest gathering begins at City Hall at 8 a.m. The march from City Hall to the Batavia PD headquarters is scheduled for 11 a.m.

June 5, 2020 - 5:33pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in public market, downtown, batavia, news, covid-19, coronavirus.

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It was a perfect summer day for the opening of the Downtown Public Market in Batavia. Of course, rules were in place requiring masks and social distancing.

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May 2, 2020 - 7:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in dinosaurs, downtown, batavia, news.

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Our local family of dinosaurs reappeared in Downtown Batavia today, this time with a little one in tow.

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April 25, 2020 - 2:42pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, downtown, news.

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A reader tipped us to a trio of dinosaurs marauding through Downtown Batavia. We hunted them down and shot them (with a camera) while they were passing by St. Joseph Roman Catholic Church.

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February 23, 2020 - 6:40pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in FeBREWary, downtown, batavia, news.

It was a lot of fun shooting video of FeBREWary last night and I was looking forward to editing the footage this afternoon.

When I got home last night, I put the SD card in my computer and imported the hockey video footage. When that was done, I forgot to import FeBREWary.  

Normally, I don't take SD cards out of the computer and put them right in the camera for the next project. I rotate through them in order to diminish the chance of deleting something I'm not ready to delete. But that isn't what I did this morning -- running late to cover something, I grabbed the SD card I saw first -- the one in the computer. I didn't realize my mistake until I was ready to edit the FeBREWary video.

I was disappointed. My apologies to anybody who was looking forward to being included in the video and to the BID and Downtown businesses.

February 5, 2020 - 3:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Ellicott Station, ellicott place, batavia, downtown, dri, GCEDC, news.

Press release:

The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) Board of Directors will consider accepting applications for assistance from two Batavia Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) strategic projects at the GCEDC’s Feb. 6 board meeting.

Together, the Ellicott Station and Ellicott Place projects are proposing 65 new apartments that support Genesee County’s EDGE economic development strategy for housing to support the growth of Genesee County’s businesses and communities.

Ellicott Station is a $22.5 million mixed-use brownfield redevelopment project by Savarino Companies that includes adaptive reuse and new construction on Ellicott Street in the City of Batavia. This blighted property is a key gateway entrance to Downtown Batavia, and the project would create 20 additional jobs to Downtown Batavia’s business community.

Considerable brownfield remediation, site improvements, and construction are proposed, including a five-story apartment building with 55 new modern workforce housing units, along with a brewery, restaurant/beer garden, and preparation for additional development at the 3.31-acre site.

Ellicott Station is requesting approximately $3.6 million in economic incentives, with a $2,105,792 property tax exemption, a $790,512 sales tax exemption, and a $180,792 mortgage tax exemption. Revenues from the project will also contribute to the Batavia Pathway to Prosperity brownfield redevelopment fund.

Ellicott Place is a $3.1 million redevelopment of 45-47 Ellicott St. by V.J. Gautieri Constructors that includes the creation of and access to residential and commercial spaces in Downtown Batavia.

The project will construct 10 second-floor apartments at the existing facility, along with the development of first-floor storefronts and building-wide façade improvements. The redevelopment of Ellicott Place is estimated to create nine additional jobs to Downtown Batavia’s business community.

Ellicott Place is requesting approximately $130,000 in economic incentives, with a $110,400 sales tax exemption and a $20,000 mortgage tax exemption.

Ellicott Station and Ellicott Place were among eight transformational investments announced by Gov. Andrew Cuomo as enabling the Batavia DRI’s strategy to drive new, mixed-use development, improved access to local healthcare, and transform public spaces for community use.

Since both the projects are requesting more than $100,000 in incentives, public hearings will be scheduled for comment and feedback to the requests.

November 30, 2019 - 6:56pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Shop Local, Small business Saturday, downtown, batavia, news.

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For Small Business Saturday, Iris Bodine, 8, went shopping with her aunt Margie Everett at Adam Miller Toy and Bicycle.

We didn't get a chance to visit local businesses until the afternoon, but several business owners said their shops were full in the morning and that it seems like more people seemed to be out shopping local on the first Saturday after Thanksgiving than previous years.

Dave Howe, Charles Men's Shop, said at least a half-dozen people mentioned the annual Shop Local promotion is what motivated them to visit local businesses today.  

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Stephen Valle and Carrie Lawrence, Valle Jewelers. 

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Chris Crocker and Leslie Moma, The Yngodess Shop.

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Don Brown and Dave Howe, Charles Men's Shop.

November 22, 2019 - 5:49pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Ken's Charcoal Pits, batavia, downtown, business, notify.

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The owner of Bourbon & Burger Co. and The Coffee Press, Derek Geib, has acquired Ken's Charcoal Pits from local businessman Ken Mistler.

"Essentially, Kenny was just at the point where he wanted to sell and I was at the point where it made sense," Geib said.

What attracted Geib to the property was its location and its unique amenities, such as a first-class downstairs banquet facility, a brick pizza oven, an outdoor, all-season patio, and the walk-in food counter at the front of the building.

"Kenny's put a ridiculous amount of money and time into this location," Geib said. "It's got access on Main Street and from the parking lot, beautiful downstairs banquet space, the outdoor patio, which is unlike any other in Batavia. I mean, he's got one-of-kind pizza, the charcoal pit that's in the front. There was just there's so much potential in this space and in Kenny's put it in a position to be very successful."

Mistler purchased the building a few months after the former South Beach Restaurant closed its doors suddenly in 2009. He operated the restaurant as South Beach for a short time and then changed the name to City Slickers. About a year ago, he changed the name to Ken's Charcoal Pits.

Geib isn't ready to announce the new name of the restaurant and said that while the main restaurant menu will change, the pizza and charcoal pits will remain the same.

"We'd like to have this all done early next year, which is very aggressive," Geib said.

Mistler owns several other downtown properties, including the former Genesee Bank building at Jackson and Main and the former Carr's building. We couldn't reach him late this afternoon for comment but Geib said Mistler will still be around. He's offered to continue to help with the business and he enjoys cooking pizza.

Previously:

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October 31, 2019 - 11:22am

Press release:

O’Lacy’s Irish Pub & Eli Fish Brewing Company have worked together and created a custom-made beer, hoping to show the public and business community that its not always about competing, but when you work together, both businesses can benefit!

On Tuesday, Nov. 5th , 5-9 p.m., O’Lacy’s Irish Pub will be hosting a kick-off party for the new hazelnut porter that has been custom made for O’Lacy’s Irish Pub by Eli Fish Brewing Company.

The collaboration was inspired as Kent Ewell (owner, O’Lacy’s), Chris Hoffman (bartender at O’Lacy’s) and Matt Gray (wwner, Eli Fish) were discussing the large amount of draft beer that O’Lacy’s sells.

“We should make you your own custom brew,” Gray said. “You pick the type (lager, ale etc.) and flavor if you wish and we can make it."    

After reviewing what was currently on tap at O’Lacy’s, Ewell chose a hazelnut porter, which is named appropriately, “Old Sod Hazelnut Porter.”

After sampling the test batch, Ewell said, “I think this is very unique and something people will enjoy.” 

At Tuesday's kick-off party, pints will be on special for $3.50. Come on out and try the new “Old Sod Hazelnut Porte,r” which pairs perfectly with O’Lacy’s Reuben sandwich and famous homemade chips and dip.

October 6, 2019 - 10:03pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in video, downtown, BID, batavia, wine walk.
Video Sponsor
September 27, 2019 - 2:47pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in downtown, BID, business, batavia.

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This afternoon, Sarah and Casey Stockwell install a display for the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce on East Main Street, Downtown Batavia, as part of the Business Improvement District's annual scarecrow contest.

Sarah is in accounting and HR at the Chamber. Steve Falitico, the chamber's membership development director, helped design the display.

September 27, 2019 - 2:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in photo, downtown, batavia, news.

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Taken yesterday evening.

September 5, 2019 - 5:29pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, restaurants, downtown, business.
Video Sponsor

Kourtney and Cait Kunichika have opened Islands Hawaiian Grill on Main Street in Batavia (former location of Larry's Steakhouse).

Kourtney, from California, moved to Western New York to play hockey at RIT and eventually became a professional hockey player in Buffalo.

While living in Batavia, she started working at local restaurants and found she really loved food and hospitality, so the restaurant is inspired by both her passion for her Hawaiian culture -- especially since there are no Hawaiian restaurants in Western New York -- and her passion for the restaurant business.

August 30, 2019 - 1:10pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, downtown, The Coffee Press, business.

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The Coffee Press on Jackson Street in Downtown Batavia held its official grand opening on Thursday and beer and wine was introduced to the beverage offerings.

Owner Derek Geib said beer and wine will help the business build an evening crowd as well as give people coming downtown another option.

Previously: The Coffee Press on Jackson Street, now open, aims to be hometown hangout

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August 11, 2019 - 1:48pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Beertavia, video, downtown.
Video Sponsor
July 23, 2019 - 10:12am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Eat Well Grill, freshLAB, batavia, downtown, video.
Video Sponsor

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