Press-Republican

September 24, 2012

Shoe store plan for Plattsburgh tripped up

Lenny's outletnot coming toPlattsburgh right now; Kohl's delayed

By DAN HEATH
Press-Republican

---- — PLATTSBURGH — Plans for a Lenny’s Shoe and Apparel store on Tom Miller Road in the Town of Plattsburgh have been canceled.

Lenny’s co-owner Todd McCarthy said some legal roadblocks prevented them from moving forward on property in the Eaglefeather subdivision, adjacent to Champlain Spine and Pain Management and Mountain View Pediatrics.

“That proposed location is dead in the water,” he said.

RESTRICTION

McCarthy had been in negotiations to acquire the property from owners Erik Eaglefeather and Rebecca King of Eagle’s Nest Veterinary Hospital.

Eaglefeather said CVPH Medical Center, the former owner of the property, had included covenants in 1995 that limited the site to medical-related businesses.

He said CVPH and Champlain Pain and Spine Management agreed to waive that stipulation.

But Eaglefeather said the owners of Mountain View Pediatrics, Dr. Heidi Moore and Dr. Robert Moore, said they would do so only if their concerns about traffic were alleviated with a stop light or dedicated turn lane on Tom Miller Road.

That would have

delayed the project too long, so plans were scrapped, Eaglefeather said.

“I think this was a great project for Plattsburgh. That’s why I worked so hard to bring it here,” he said.

ACCESS ISSUES

Heidi Moore said their concern was with access to Tom Miller Road if one of their patients were to need to get to the hospital in an emergency. She said that could have been alleviated with a traffic light or dedicated turn lane.

She said she supported the idea of a Lenny’s Shoe and Apparel store in Plattsburgh but has to put her patients’ needs first.

“We’re more than happy to be flexible as long as our patients are not impacted.”

McCarthy and his brother, Mark, own three Lenny’s Shoe and Apparel locations in Vermont — in St. Albans, Williston and Barre, as well as a separate outlet store in Barre.

The Town of Plattsburgh Planning Board approved the plans for the new store in June. It would have been 15,000 square feet and was expected to have 10 full-time and up to five part-time employees.

LOST INVESTMENT

McCarthy, who lives on Cumberland Head and likes the Plattsburgh area, said he is unsure about immediate plans for this market after spending about $27,000 on a project that didn’t come to fruition.

“I just don’t know how much time and energy I can put into it as we gear up for the fourth quarter, which is our company’s busiest quarter,” he said.

Lenny’s sells shoes, boots, outerwear, clothing and work clothes from brands such as Carhartt, Columbia, Merrell, New Balance, The North Face, Red Wing, Timberland, Wolverine, Woolrich, Under Amour and many more.

KOHL’S STALLED

In other local business news, a Kohl’s store that received sketch-plan approval from the Town of Plattsburgh Planning Board in November has not returned to the board for detailed preliminary plan approval.

Kohl’s spokesperson Geetha Natarajan told the Press-Republican by email that Kohl’s has “not announced any plans to open a new store in your community.”

The sketch plan called for a 55,000-square-foot store to be located north of Texas Roadhouse on the former Ames Plaza property on Route 3.

CERTIFICATES FILED

In addition, a list of business certificates recently filed with the Clinton County Clerk’s Office detailed in an email from the North Country Chamber of Commerce included Olive Garden Italian Restaurants and Red Lobster.

Tara Gray, manager of media and communications with the Darden family of restaurants, said by email that while their real-estate teams are constantly looking for new sites across the country, they “do not have any plans for new locations in Plattsburgh at this time.”

Email Dan Heath: dheath@pressrepublican.com