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Cattaraugus County IDA approves project at Holiday Valley and others

ELLICOTTVILLE – Several projects in Cattaraugus County received full support and agreement Tuesday from the county Industrial Development Agency.

Win Sum Ski Corp., the group behind Holiday Valley, won approval for a plan to spend $3.4 million to bring improvements to Holiday Valley, including a road realignment, as part of a sale/leaseback arrangement with sales tax abatement.

Resort President Dennis Eshbaugh and Vice President for Finance David Trathen laid out the plan in mid-March.

One of the major projects in the plan, although it may not take place until 2015, will be the realignment of Holiday Valley Road, to improve access to the resort, safety and greater impact to the resort, Trathen said during that meeting.

Improvements for snow operations include the addition of 54 automated snow guns and the extension of a snowmaking pipeline. Snow operations are planned to be moved toward automated operations.

Other upgrades and betterments are expected to include the re-creation of a clock tower.

The previous one on the resort property was taken down to make way for the new lodge, according to Eshbaugh.

In the new lodge area, the cabana structure would be replaced with a wood frame structure to better match the facilities. Several technological upgrades will also take place, including the replacement of point-of-sale machines.

In a similar leaseback maneuver, a project was approved to allow Community Bank N.A. to build a new facility on the former Bonaventure Square area, the land that used to be the home to the Castle Restaurant and Hotel.

Community Bank purchased the 10-acre site in February to be the home to back-office loans and mortgage processing in a new 25,000-square-foot building.

The project is expected to cost around $6 million. In addition to the leaseback program, the bank will also receive a 10-year payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreement from the IDA.

The new facility is expected to preserve nearly 250 jobs in Cattaraugus County.

Construction for the project is expected to start the first week of June, at the latest, according to IDA Executive Director Corey Wiktor.

The final project to receive approval from the board gives MJ Painting Contractor Corp., of Olean, approval to move forward with the expansion project at the 29 Homer St. facility.

The expansion project, totaling $528,500, is expected to secure about 26 jobs and construction of a 7,500-square-foot building.

The new development is expected to have about 30 percent of the new build area as green space.