Updated 09/11/2012 07:58 AM
Elmira Regional City Center plans to keep jobs local
City officials in Elmira are optimistic about the new Regional City Center as the project is expected to bring in business and create approximately 300 jobs. As our Katie Husband explains, the developer of the project is committed to keeping those jobs in the area.
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ELMIRA, N.Y. -- Progress continues as the Elmira City Council voted Monday night to move forward with its Elmira Regional City Center project.
"We voted on selling the property, the federal building to Michael Elzufon and Real Development Company, actually we're calling it the Regional Center," said Sue Skidmore, Elmira Mayor.
The project will turn two blocks between Baldwin Street and the Clemens Center Parkway into the center which includes a hotel, apartments, conference center and a restaurant. Gray Street will be gone. Elzufon grew up in the area and still has relatives here who informed him of the property.
"He got a phone call, I think, from one of his relatives that lives locally, checked it out online and he flew right in almost," said Skidmore.
"This is the first time in my career to come back to New York and to be able to do it in Upstate, where, you only can come from somewhere once and it's great to be here, I really love it," said Michael Elzufon, CEO of Real Development Corporation.
The project is expected to create over 200 construction jobs and approximately 90 to 100 permanent jobs. As a native to this area, Elzufon says he is committed to keeping those jobs here.
"He has promised us to use as much of the local talent as he can," said Skidmore.
"This is a project that I have developed locally and it should be built local. Our general contractors, architects, etcetera are all if you will, in charge of going out of their way to recruit and look for local participation," said Elzufon.
As the project continues to move forward, Elzufon has one message to anyone out there who is an electrician, cleaner, chef and more.
"If you're a champ and you're good at what you do, welcome and come on in," said Elzufon.
And with one more hurdle behind him, the hope is that those jobs could be hired out in the near future.
Project leaders are still waiting to hear if they will receive a $5 million state grant which won't be announced until November. In the meantime, officials are hoping construction will begin this winter on the apartments and could be finished by next summer.