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Ideas for downtown Troy development

TROY -- A multimillion dollar makeover for Troy's waterfront.  It's been talked about for years, but new plans are out this week.  Supporters say the plan will transform downtown and Monument Square, but some concern remains about where the money will come from to make it happen.

Right now, they're simply breaking ground on ideas.  The goal is to make something of the old City Hall site near Monument Square and give people another reason to have a night out in Troy, and stay there, too.

"Filling that spot with something that brings life and activity and more residents, more retail, is very important to us," said Elizabeth Young of the Troy Business Improvement District.

The vision could end up being a $50 million facelift to Uncle Sam's city.  "Significant improvements to the public space, riverfront, waterfront improvements," said developer Sam Judge.  "There's a grand stair that leads from Monument Square to the riverfront."

Judge pitched his proposal to the Troy, which included about 100 apartments, some retail space, and parking.  The city is asking $1.5 million for the space.  The council president has some questions about how the project will be financed.

"We are exploring it with the developer to see if all his ducks are in a row," said Lynn Kopka.  When asked if the city or county might financially assist the project, Kopka said, "that would always be something that's on the table, certainly any requests from a developer, whether that comes to fruition or not depends on what's out there."

Out there Friday night -- Troy Night Out, coordinated by the Business Improvement District, eager at the chance to add another stop on the Collar City social circuit.  It also says any construction wouldn't get in the way of preexisting businesses.

"We've already spoken to the city about the construction being staged from behind, so from the river side, and really this is all about a means to an end, and envisioning those beautiful pictures of beautiful buildings," Young said.

"The public-private partnership is key to the success of this endeavor and we're looking forward to it," Judge said.

That big empty space is about two acres large.  It's one the city has been looking to do something with for a while now.
 
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