High Rock plan gets citizen support; South Broadway motel sold to developer

A community group called Citizens for High Rock on Thursday announced its support for a development proposal for High Rock submitted by Hyman Hemispheric LLC and Sequence Development. The plan calls for 656 parking spaces, and housing and retail shops on the 2.62-acre High Rock parcel, according to the Times Union. The group’s Facebook page may be found here: https://www.facebook.com/citizensforhighrock/ The 64-room Grand Union Motel and Spa on South Broadway has been sold to developer Steve Ethier, according to the Albany Business Journal. According to the report, John Yong and Yong Brothers Trading Inc. bought the Grand Union Motel (not to be confused with the similarly named hotel of the Victorian Era) a decade ago for $5.8 million. It was acquired by Ethier for $3.43 million. The paper offers no commentary as to why the property sold for nearly two and a half million dollars less than the price it was purchased for a decade earlier, and cites Saratoga PAC’s intention that the redevelopment of South Broadway is one of their priorities for the next two years. Weird, or no?

City resident Tina Carton started work at City Hall this week in the city's recently revived position of administrator of parks, open land and historic preservation, reports Dennis Yusko. An advocate for green jobs and renewable energy, the 46-year-old Carton will coordinate with the city's Open Space Advisory Committee, Complete Streets Committee and Climate Smart Community Task Force. She will earn $45,000, and report to Bradley Birge, administrator of planning and economic development. The city's parks administrator position had been vacant since 2009, when it was defunded amid budget cuts. A grant from NYSERDA will cover $33,740 of Carton's wages each of the next two years.

Saratoga PLAN announced it has raised 80 percent of the $3.1 million needed to complete the purchase of the 166-acre Pitney family farm. PLAN has worked to negotiate the terms of the agricultural conservation easement that will define how the land can be used in perpetuity. Read more here: http://www.saratogaplan.org/blog/saving-the-pitney-farm-update/

After 18 years at WAMC Northeast Public Radio, Dona Frank has retired as Chief of Staff for the organization. Frank will serve as the public relations representative at The Saratoga County Fairgrounds & Expo Center, as well as represent buyers and sellers as an agent for Select Sotheby's International Realty in Saratoga Springs. She also keeps busy with her band, The Spurs USA.