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COMIDA OKs breaks for Marketplace; new anchor planned

Rochester Business Journal
December 17, 2013

The owner of Marketplace Mall expects to announce this week the name of the company it wants to anchor a redeveloped portion of the facility, an executive said Tuesday.

Dennis Wilmot, senior vice president of leasing and development for Wilmorite Inc., told members of the County of Monroe Industrial Development Agency that the identity of the anchor store likely will be revealed “in the next day or two.”

The announcement came prior to a Wilmorite entity being granted incentives of nearly $1.1 million by COMIDA for a $30.3 million redevelopment at the Henrietta mall.

The benefit to the community is nearly $5.1 million, COMIDA projects. The project is expected to create 170 jobs.

The COMIDA approval came despite criticisms from some who say retail developments should not be given tax breaks and Wilmorite does not deserve the incentives.

The Marketplace/BTMPM LLC plans to redevelop the former locations of Bon-Ton Stores Inc. and the DSW Inc. shoe store, along with a parcel that contained a movie theater.

The site will be replaced with an anchor store that will be a regional draw, Wilmot said. Because of the tourism component, the project qualifies for incentives.

The addition of upscale department store Von Maur and Western New York’s first L.L. Bean store has resulted in shoppers from beyond Rochester’s five-county area accounting for up to 40 percent of purchases at Eastview Mall, Wilmot said.

The company hopes to complete the redevelopment prior to Christmas next year, he said.

The Marketplace/BTMPM will be part of a 20-year payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreement with the town of Henrietta and the Rush-Henrietta School District.

Tax payments from Marketplace have declined in recent years, in part because of the growth in online shopping, Wilmot said. The PILOT will result in increases of 1 percent annually.

COMIDA also approved tax breaks for Quality Vision International Inc., which will get incentives of $147,657 for a $2 million expansion of its Hudson Avenue facility in Rochester. The community benefit is projected to be $475,962.

A designer and manufacturer of optical and multisensor coordinate measuring machines, the company plans to add 17,500 square feet to its 250,000-square-foot facility. It plans to add three to its workforce of 285 over three years.

(c) 2013 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or email service@rbj.net.


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