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Tax deal for Sibley building approved

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Plans are to make the Sibley building downtown an urban center. - PHOTO BY MATT DETURCK

The board of the Monroe County Industrial Development Agency unanimously approved a tax deal this afternoon for the developer of the Sibley building downtown. The COMIDA agreement sets a baseline tax payment that increases as the building is redeveloped and leased.

Boston-based Winn Development closed on the Sibley building on East Main Street last month. A limited partnership formed by Winn will re-develop the historic 12-story building into a mixed-use urban center with retail on the first and second floors, residential on the upper floors, and office space.

The building will also house a police substation, which is expected to open in July 2013.

Monroe Community College occupies two floors in the Sibley building, and recently signed a new five-year lease. The college's Board of Trustees has voted, however, to move the Damon Campus to Kodak property on State Street after that lease expires. College officials, including President Anne Kress, still seem set on the move -- despite opposition by Mayor Tom Richards -- so at today's COMIDA meeting, it was interesting to hear Winn Vice President Joseph Eddy refer to MCC's "ongoing site-selection process."

Winn paid $5 million for the Sibley building and will immediately begin $3 million in neglected repairs and maintenance, said Carlos Carballada, the city's commissioner of neighborhood and business development at today's meeting. That includes, Eddy said, security upgrades.

Security is one of the reasons MCC officials cite in favor of the move to Kodak.

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