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Wednesday, March 26

Ellsworth Square gets Planning Board approval

SARATOGA SPRINGS >> A mixed-use development proposed in the footprint of the former Ellsworth Ice Cream factory on Division Street was approved by the Planning Board Wednesday night.

The project, known as Ellsworth Square, has been working through the city’s Planning Board for more than a year and seeks to transform the now empty site of the former factory into a solid block of townhouses, houses, apartments and commercial space that will occupy the entire block between Division and Cherry streets and Walworth Street and Marvin Alley.

“We knew you would eventually get tired of seeing us,” Peter Belmonte, one of the local developers on the project, laughed after the project was approved.

He is working on another local developer, Steve Ethier, on the mixed-use development, their first collaboration.

“We bought it out of foreclosure. Instead of bidding against each other we decided to join up,” Ethier said.

The Planning Board worked through particular details of the project with the two Wednesday before approving the site plan and subdivision of site.

The plan is comprised of 24 townhouses, four single-family homes, 20 apartments and 4,000 square feet of commercial space.

Plans call for a three-story building at the corner of Division and Walworth streets with commercial space on the ground floor and apartments on the upper two. Next to that building will be a two-story apartment building on the corner of Cherry and Walworth streets.

 “We want low-impact, low-density, low turnover establishments,” Ethier said, agreeing to restrictions to keep out restaurants, barber shops and other uses.

A private, internal street will provide access to the townhouses’ attached two-car garages.

Ethier said they hope to move forward with construction in the fall. Belmonte said, depending on market conditions, the build out should take about 18 months.

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