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DOT project troubles Gouverneur businesses

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GOUVERNEUR — Richardson Flooring, 445 E. Main St., and A Plus Auto, 470 E. Main St., are pursuing options that could take their businesses out of the village because of problems with the state Department of Transportation reconstruction of part of Route 11.

“It all relates to the DOT coming and stealing my parking lot,” said Kenneth F. Richardson, who owns Richardson Flooring with his father, Calvin N. “I want to look at all my opportunities.”

Mr. Richardson will come before the town Planning Board and Zoning Board of Appeals at 7 p.m. Monday for a special-use permit for a retail flooring business at 1089 Route 11, property he owns near the Custard Cottage.

William D. Infield, owner of A Plus, will come before the same boards for site plan review of a building he is putting up at 1446 Route 11, which is near Nortrax.

Mr. Infield was unavailable for comment, but Code Enforcement Officer Michael J. McQuade said his plan is to erect a shell building that he may move into eventually or use for some other purpose.

“He doesn’t want to move,” Mr. McQuade said. “With the road work, he’s going to lose a lot of space.”

Mr. Richardson has plans for a 5,000-square-foot building, Mr. McQuade said.

If Richardson Flooring moves, another business may move in, he said.

A developer is interested in the Richardson property, an adjacent house and a vacant lot for what could be an 8,000-square-foot business.

“I don’t have plans on that yet,” Mr. McQuade said.

The DOT project, which already has begun and which will span two construction seasons, will include reconstruction of Main Street from North Gordon to Railroad streets. The work will cut into space A Plus has used for parking. Mr. Richardson has complained that the state has taken so much of his property that he will be in violation of village ordinances for parking.

DOT spokesman Michael R. Flick had no comment.

To help with deliveries at Richardson Flooring, DOT agreed to install mountable curbs, but Mr. Richardson said he would gladly hand back the money the state paid him through eminent domain if they would leave his property the way it was.

“A tire could potentially go over the curb, but it’s still eight to 10 inches in the air. It’s a ridiculous way of doing things,” Mr. Richardson said. “They all wonder why there’s a mass exodus out of New York.”

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