Written by G. Jeffrey Aaron
Ithaca Journal
Full Article

The construction of the Elmira area’s fourth Family Dollar store, planned for a now-vacant parcel near West Hudson and South Main streets on the city’s southside, is expected to begin by early summer.

The 8,300 square-foot building that will house the store is being built by the Ellicott Development Co. of Buffalo. When the construction is done, the building will then be leased to Family Dollar on a long-term basis, said William Paladino, Ellicott’s CEO.

“Family Dollar is one of our primary customers. We’ve done many stores for them but this is our first one in Elmira,” Paladino said. “The stores we’ve built are in Buffalo, Syracuse, Rochester and throughout upstate New York and there are about 15 stores, total.

“We do a lot of developing in small cities and urban areas and Family Dollar is active in those same areas. We have a lot of experience with them.”

Family Dollar, based in Matthews, N.C., expected to open between 450 to 500 new stores this year, according to the company’s website. During the first half of fiscal 2012, 184 new stores were opened and 342 were renovated, relocated or expanded.

The discount retailer also reported record earnings for the second quarter. For the three-month period ending Feb. 25, the company’s net income increased 10.7 percent to $136.4 million, compared with net income of $123.2 million for same quarter of fiscal 2011.

County planners reviewed the site plans for the project at their April meeting and Elmira’s Community Development Director Jennifer Miller said city planners did the same last week. Other than a few unresolved issues with signage, she said, the plans to develop the site were approved.

Ellicott built and owns the Vocational Education Services for Individuals with Disabilities building on East Church Street and the building occupied by the New York State Division of Parole, located on East Chemung Place. When the company purchased the acreage for the parole building, adjoining land for future projects was included in the deal.

The 1.29 acres the Family Dollar store will sit on, however, is separate from parole building land deal. Miller said it was also the last undeveloped parcel in the area bounded by South Main Street, West Chemung Place, West Hudson Street and the Clemens Center Parkway. The area, which was formerly occupied by residential properties and the vacant Hygeia building, was purchased and cleared by the city for economic development projects about 10 years ago.