Revitalizing a Village

02/18/2022 | Back to News

In 2019, the Village of Lancaster received Smart Growth Community Funding through New York State’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI). The Village envisioned their Central Business District (CBD) as a vibrant, mixed-use destination providing opportunities for a “Live, Work, Play” experience for both residents and visitors. Reestablishing the historic street grid enabled new economic development opportunities for infill and mixed-use buildings to recreate the urban fabric of the Village.

This project began with Wendel’s innovative Immersion™ process. Over two days, the Wendel team met with key players to capture ideas from the Village, public, and merchants, as well as the landowner/developer of properties on both sides of West Main St. This process led to creative design solutions such as retaining walls and utility improvements both designed to accommodate the road extension as well as future buildings, and also a mini-roundabout at the newly created intersection of West Main and North Aurora St. Considering both the public and private impacts, the collaborative solution for the new retaining walls led to significant cost savings that allowed a typically challenging urban development project, with slim financial margins, to be feasibly constructed.

Due to this project’s success, the Village also pursued and received grant funding for an additional Complete Streets project adjacent to West Main St., which will construct two roundabouts and incorporate a road diet on a parallel street to West Main. The developer has also been able to obtain lease commitments for three phases of the future development along the West Main St corridor.

“Property values in the Village are going up because people want to be here. Retail demand within ten miles of West Main St is very low, but the Village now has a waiting list due to the economic ecosystem that was generated by this plan.” – Tommy Sweeney, Glassco Management LLC

Based on our work on the West Main Street project, Glassco Management decided to also bring Wendel into the Lancaster Village Center project, which is currently ongoing and has been broken down into three phases. This project site is approximately five acres, and will include new buildings, enhanced site amenities including parking, sidewalks, lighting, landscaping, and more. The new buildings will include approximately 22,000 square feet of commercial space, and 44,000 square feet of residential space. To honor the original character of the Central Avenue Historic District, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, buildings will be no more than 4 stories tall.

Lancaster Village Center

West Main St