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Main Street grant could anchor business to Lake Street

The Hamburg Village board discussed marketing, its mission statement and possible Main Street grant projects at its most recent meeting.

HAMBURG — Michael Stachera, a local business and property owner, addressed the Hamburg Village Board at its work session on June 2 at 5:30 p.m., regarding a project he would like to execute on Lake Street.

The property, located at 84 Lake St., could be eligible for a Main Street grant because of its useful size and location. The village comprehensive plan envisions a more developed Lake Street corridor. Paul Becker, special projects coordinator for the village, said this building could anchor the street.

Stachera, who designed Falling Waters Spa, told the board that his project would create 30 or more jobs for local residents. He also said the second floor would be used for two apartments, while the first floor would be used as a salon, as well as a coffee shop or juice bar.

In addition to his phase one idea, Stachera told the board he wants to turn the garage on the property into a yoga studio. Stachera said the property has been unoccupied for more than three years, and has gone through three winters without heat. The parking lot, he said will have space for 40 cars.

“I feel I am quite prepared,” Stachera said. He said his renovations would take about six months, and said getting permits would be simple because it has no variances and he has potential renters at hand.

The board was apprehensive to approve the project for the Main Street grant because the village grant writer is concerned with the timing. Stachera does not currently own the property. While he said, “it’s just a matter of getting lawyers in a room to finish the paperwork,” the board doesn’t want to pay for the grant writer’s services if Stachera’s project is not eligible in time for the June 16 grant application deadline.

Before the application can be sent in, Stachera needs to have ownership of the property and have all permits in place. The board decided to meet with the grant writer and Stachera, in the coming days, to better determine whether it’s worth it to back this project. Village trustee Laura Hackathorn said that it should be evaluated to see if it is what the state is looking for. She said the grant writer could provide insight on whether Stachera’s project is likely to win the grant.

In other board news: Special projects coordinator Paul Becker reported to the board that the recreational trails task force sub-committee is continuing to work on the safe routes to school and fitness trails projects.

Deputy Mayor Tallman’s motion to support the Transportation Alternatives Program grant application for the Healthy Neighborhood Corridor project. The project includes an initial phase that would bring 5-foot-wide sidewalks from Center Street to Hamburg High School.

Becker said the actual construction, if funding is acquired, could start in 2019. By supporting the grant application, the board also commits the village to paying 25 percent of the project’s cost, which during the work session was estimated to be $213,000.

– The board talked about copywriting the new village tagline, “Come to discover, stay for the charm.”

– In an effort to get funding for a $5,000 marketing micro-site that would be provided to the village by The Quilted Squirrel, Hackathorn suggested that they look into a way to fund it and get it going. Mayor Tom Moses said, “We really don’t have the money to start juggling,” in reference to other costs the village has. Hackathorn said the village could look into sharing the cost and site with the Village Business Advisory Council.

– Trustee Paul Gaughan made a motion to thank Imagine Hamburg for their efforts to help the village, and specifically for volunteering to build the trolley stop pavilion on Buffalo and Clark Streets.

– There will be a special meeting about the 0 Main Street project at 225 Lake St. at 7:15 p.m. on June 9.

– The next village board work session and meeting will be held June 16 at 5:30 and 7 p.m., respectively.

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