News Tidbits 7/15/11: Hotel Ithaca Finally Ready for Construction?

15 07 2011

Image property of visitithaca.com

Doing my usual perusing of the city planning board pre-agenda (the “project review committee”) turned up this piece of information slated for discussion:

Minor Subdivision Approval, Two‐Lot Subdivision Pertaining to City of Ithaca Tax Parcels 70.‐4‐4.2, 70.‐4‐4.3, and 70.‐4‐4.4 , Jeffrey Rimland, Applicant for Ithaca Properties, LLC. The applicant is proposing to create two lots. The applicant will subdivide the existing 60,095 SF parcel currently containing the Rothschild Building and vacant land fronting East Green Street (represented as Parcels A and B‐2 on the accompanying plat or Tax Map Parcels 70.‐4‐4.2 and 70.‐4‐4.4) into two separate parcels. Parcel A will measure 53, 805 SF and retain the footprint of the existing Rothschild Building. Parcel B‐2 will be combined with the 2,140 SF Parcel B‐1 on the plat or 70.‐4‐4.3 (formerly surplus city land which was conveyed to the applicant) to make a 8,430 SF parcel which will front E. Aurora and Green Streets and will contain the proposed new hotel.

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On the surface, it’s nothing special, just a lot subdivision. But more importantly, it’s consolidating the lot to be used for the Hotel Ithaca, which has been on hold since gaining approvals due to an inability to land financing in the recession-ravaged bank loan market (the development cost is expected to be around $27 million). The consolidation of the property suggests to me that the project may finally have procured funding to begin development of the 10-story, 140-room hotel. Or at least, one can hope.

The other bright piece of news is that it looks like Seneca Way, the 5-story building proposed for the former Challenge Industries site on the eastern edge of downtown, has received all necessary zoning variances through mitigation (moving two apartments from the north to the south side of the building, moving the fitness center from the top floor to the bottom floor, moving and resizing of the roof terrace, and lastly, a deed restriction that prevents any other building over 40 feet from being built within 70 feet of the northern property line). The last mitigation tactic seems a bit controversial to me, but most of the zoning in that area has a 40-ft. maximum as it is. I suppose if someone ever wanted to redevelop the insurance building on the corner though, it would suck for them. But at least this project is moving forward. I imagine with this under construction and the Collegetown Terrace project up the road, East State Street is going to see a lot of construction traffic for the next two years.


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17 07 2011
ex-Ithacan

Wow, that is good news. I hope your supposition about the hotel is correct. That building would boost the impact of downtown for those entering the city from South Hill.

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