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Bringing life back to vacant Front Street building

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CNY/NNY/S. Tier: Bringing life back to vacant Front Street building
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BINGHAMTON, N.Y. -- It's another effort made by Broome County leaders to spruce up the City of Binghamton. Broome County Land Bank has acquired its first property to redevelop and is quickly taking action.

Fifty Front Street could soon get some tender loving care.

"We want to make sure that strategically it fits within the neighborhood, that it matches with a given municipality in this case with the City of Binghamton with their land use goals," said Stacey Duncan, Broome County Land Bank executive director.

The former hotel and nursing home has sat vacant since 2011. The Broome County Land Bank acquired it as its first property from the county in March.

"When you have properties sitting for so long naturally you have incidences of vandalism of break-ins it just changes the dynamic of the community," said Duncan.

Now, the Land Bank just accepted a proposal from Newman Development Group to bring what's left back to life.

"It's general occupancy but specifically it provides opportunities for young professionals that may want to live closer to the downtown or empty nesters or retirees that maybe want to have apartment living so it satisfies what we think is a market demand for those types of housing opportunities," said Duncan.

Along with housing, the plan indicates retail and office space to be included. Officials say this idea fit the profile of that specific community.

"You have Roberson Museum there, you have the west side neighborhoods there so you have some pretty stable neighborhoods there and our goal is to make sure we maintain through the redevelopment of 50 Front, that we maintain that stable community," said Duncan.

Broome County Land Bank leaders anticipate adopting Newman Development Group as the official developer of the project at its May 27 board meeting.

After a developer is chosen, the Broome County Land Bank will submit its application to the Southern Tier Regional Economic Development Council to grant the project.

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