New life coming to downtown buildings

NORWICH – Having been completely vacant and completely neglected for more than half a decade, local developers are breathing new life into what’s become an eyesore in downtown Norwich.

The mammoth three-story buildings located at 42 and 44-46 N. Broad St. in Norwich may have a rich history, but only recently have they gained a promising future. Owners Scott Sutton and Sharon Pelosi, proprietors of Hercules Properties LLC, closed on the two conjoined building last September. Thanks to the support of economic catalysts including Commerce Chenango and the City of Norwich, they’re now in the process of using multiple streams of public and private funds to restore the buildings to their former glory.

“There are too many big box stores being made,” said Sutton. “Something like these buildings – if they’re not taken care of – will, like a dinosaur, become extinct one day. We want to revive that species and keep it going.”

The circa 1880s buildings – once home to coming and going businesses including S.E. Johns department store and flooring, the Keating drug store., JC Penny Co., and Besdin Furniture Co. – will be restored to a prime commercial space with residential quarters occupying the second and third floors. Seven newly modeled apartments are included in the floor design; and on the ground floor, plans are to open a craft brewer on the left (44-46 N. Broad) and a regional market for local products on the right (42 N. Broad).

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