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Carthage development, renovation projects moving forward

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CARTHAGE — According to village Community Development Director John F. McHugh, since the village was awarded a $400,000 Community Development Block Grant, the grant committee has been able to shift gears on a downtown renovation project.

Mr. McHugh reported to the Carthage Industrial Development Corp. on Wednesday that funding to renovate upper apartments at 253-255 State St. now will come out of the 2013 grant, and the $50,000 from the 2012 grant that must be spent by December will be used on other approved projects.

“This allows us to do things in a more efficient manner. The structural work can be done prior to the apartment renovation,” Mr. McHugh said. The building also will benefit from a $200,000 grant through the Rural Area Revitalization Project to repair the roof and back exterior wall. TLC Real Estate is at 255 State St., and the former Jim’s Pub is next door.

Mr. McHugh also reported on the progress of the Braman’s Block development.

The development corporation is turning over the former Braman Manufacturing Co. property to Thousand Islands Area Habitat for Humanity for the construction of five or six homes. Mr. McHugh said an appraisal by D.G.M. Coon & Co. of Watertown found the property to be of zero value because of the amount of demolition needed for development. He said there are a number of building foundations underground on the property; however, Habitat plans to build the houses on slab foundations.

“We are taking a piece of property of no value, which is blight on the community, and working on making it into something of value,” Mr. McHugh said. He plans to meet with representatives from the village and Aubertine and Currier Architects, Engineers & Land Surveyors PLLC of Watertown to determine the layout of the infrastructure.

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