City Officials Discuss Economic, Development Accomplishments

Several projects, collaborations, initiatives and programs were either started or completed by the Jamestown development department in 2021.

Last week, Crystal Surdyk, city development director, discussed economic and community development accomplishments last year with the Jamestown Urban Renewal Agency (JURA) board during its annual meeting.

One of the projects highlighted by Surdyk included the redevelopment of the former Key Bank Building along Main Street. She said city officials are working with the owner, who is trying to sell the building, to find a new developer. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic and personal issues the owner, Arnold Duke, is selling the building. Surdyk said the plan is to still redevelop the building into a mixed-use commercial and residential space that could be utilized for a tech company.

The Greater Jamestown Riverwalk lighting project gained traction last year after being stalled. Surdyk said city officials are working with the state Department of Transportation on the permit to allow lighting equipment around the Washington Street Bridge. She said in the spring the lights should be installed, which will decoratively light up the Washington Street bridge, South Main Street bridge and the Jamestown Board of Public Utilities silo.

“We will finally have lights along the Washington Street Bridge,” she said.

The Jamestown Riverwalk Community Skatepark will be completed in the spring, Surdyk said. She said once completed, it will be a state-of-the-art park, which could be one of the locations of a series of skateboard competitions in the state.

Surdyk also discussed the Fund for Downtown Programming, which assists local attractions and coordinators with hosting special events in the city. She said last year the funding assisted the Reg Lenna Center for the Arts host the Million Dollar Quartet in November. She added that the funding has also assisted the St. Susan Center with a fundraiser that will be held at the Crystal Ballroom Thursday, Jan. 27, featuring celebrity cook Geoffrey Zakarian. The dinner and cooking competition will start at 5 p.m. A single ticket will cost $75, two will cost $125 and a table of eight is $500. For more information, call 716-664-2253.

In 2021, the city completed five emergency demolitions, including the former Jamestown Royal Upholstery building along Crescent Street. In addition, the city also completed or is in the process of completing 11 additional demolitions. With the assistance of the Chautauqua County Land Bank, nine other city properties were also demolished last year.

In other business, the board approved a new employment contract with the Jamestown City Administration Association. The new contract includes 2.5% pay increases for the first three years and a 2.75% salary hike in the last year of the contract. The JCAA has two employee bargaining units that include public works, assessors and controllers office employees as well as JURA officials. The Jamestown City Council already approved the contract, but because some of the JCAA employees work for JURA the board had to approve the contract as well.


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