Historic Johnstown Downtown Getting Facelift

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Seven storefronts in Johnstown’s historic downtown will benefit from shares of a $200,000 funding pool from the NY Main Street Grant Program, which provides financial resources and technical assistance to improve traditional main streets and neighborhoods. City leaders have been working with citizens and architects on details of what should be encouraged and allowed with facade renovations to preserve the historical charm of the city.

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Linda S. Joseph Inc., doing business as Vintage Cafe at 21 West Main Street, will receive $16,125 from the grant program toward a facade revitalization estimated to cost $26,500. Pending Planning Board review expected in March, the work would replace broken and missing bricks; remove plywood and curved details over the front door; replace the flashing at the top of the storefront’s cornice; replace a residence door and the front-entrance storm door; replace, paint and coat interior and exterior woodwork, galvanized metal masonry; and improve the lighting.

In February, the city Planning Board approved a renovation for 18 West Main Street proposed by downtown property owner and former city councilman at large Bryan Marcucci. He plans to turn the property into a  restaurant and microbrewery called Black Tie Pub N Brew. Marcucci’s project has been awarded $31,850 through the NY Main Street Grant Program.

main st johnstown 2Jeff and Nick Kollar have submitted plans for a $33,000 remodel of first-floor storefronts at 1-5 W. Main St.,  $24,375 of which would be covered by a grant, subject to Planning Board review. Nick and Jeff Kollar own the building and Nick works for C.T. Male, one of the tenants. The other tenants are Ferguson & Foss Surveyors, Osborne Computers and C.W. Hair Design.

Helmut Philipp, an attorney with Brenner Group, LLC of Delmar, Albany County, received approval in February to transform 17 W. Main St. into apartments and a retail storefront. That project will receive $34,900 through the NY Main Street Grant Program. The finished building will have an 8-foot-wide, 7-foot-tall center window, a new cedar roof and freshly stained brick. Recessed lighting may be installed over the windows and doors.

Arthur Schrum and Douglas Town, will received $15,000 toward repairing, priming, painting and repointing the front facade of 128 W. Main St. as well as replacing and repairing the cellar entrance.

Laura Casamento will receive $15,000 to help fund a new entry door/trim; window repairs, exterior paint, and installation of three gas meters at On The Way Up.

Theresa Cook was granted $12,750 toward front and rear facade renovation, the installation of a rear fire escape, and the replacement of windows and electric wiring throughout 32 W. Main St.

The grant program is administered by the Office of Community Renewal with funds from the New York State Housing Trust Fund Corporation (HTFC) to units of local government, business improvement districts, and other not-for-profit organizations. The money is earmarked for revitalizing historic downtowns, mixed-use neighborhood commercial districts and village centers.