CARS HOMES JOBS

Maritime Center up for sale

Group unable to find tenant because of operating costs

Thursday, May 31, 2012
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The Capital Region Maritime Center in Alplaus has been put up for sale by its board of directors.
The Capital Region Maritime Center in Alplaus has been put up for sale by its board of directors.

— For sale: Riverfront maritime center zoned for commercial and recreational use in Glenville — serious buyers only.

The Capital Region Maritime Center was officially placed on the market Monday after it remained empty for nearly a year. The center’s board of directors issued a document soliciting bids for the property to six prospective buyers after an exhaustive search for a new tenant to lease the scenic facility along the Mohawk River.

The center is setting a minimum “bid” for the property at $1.2 million, according to a flier obtained by The Daily Gazette. The property includes 6.22 acres and the 10,000-square-foot center and is located in an area above the Mohawk’s flood plain.

Board President Chet Watson said the flier was distributed to six prospective buyers this week. Each will have until June 18 to submit an offer, which should also include a down payment, terms of the sale, anticipated use of the property and a proposed closing date for the sale.

Watson said the board couldn’t find the right tenant for the space, largely because of cost. With the center not bringing in any money, any sort of lease carried with it a prohibitively large rent.

“Nobody could lease it for the amount of money we’d need to keep it open,” he said.

Watson identified the Halfmoon-based Fast Break Fund as one of the six prospective buyers for the center.

The organization teaches vocational skills to disadvantaged and special-needs youths.

Watson said the property is being sold without any additional restrictions. He said land could be used for anything, provided it falls within the town zoning code.

“There is no limitation on the use,” he said. “It can be used for anything.”

The nonprofit maritime center was originally built with funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and was a collaborative effort involving the town of Glenville, Catholic Charities and Capital Region BOCES.

The center was originally constructed to offer vocational training in maritime trades for at-risk teenagers. The classrooms were intended to teach them everything from how to fix small boat engines to how to build docks.

But the center never generated the anticipated interest from students searching for vocational training. Starting in 2000, the center began leasing space to Capital Region BOCES, which established a maritime academy for troubled middle-school students.

Then last year, BOCES decided to dramatically alter the program and move it to Draper Middle School in Rotterdam. Without a tenant to lease the center for $8,000 a month, the center’s board has struggled to repay $390,000 still owed on a HUD loan.

Glenville makes payments on the loan but expects to get this money back from the center. The loan is scheduled to be paid off sometime in 2018.

Glenville town Supervisor Chris Koetzle was dismayed by the looming sale and praised the center for its mission. He said the town has worked closely with the center’s board and has faith they’ll find a buyer with a similar function.

“Hopefully whoever comes in and purchases it will serve the community in the same way the maritime center did,” he said.

 
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comments

May 31, 2012
10:04 a.m.
hodgkinst says...

Rocking the Boat a small boat building operation in the Bronx is very successful in developing useful skills, knowledge and motivation in secondary school students. I hope that the maritime center can be utilized to continue a similar mission in the future. For more on Rocking the Boat: http://www.rockingtheboat.org/

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