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Downtown Lockport businesses to receive makeovers

LOCKPORT – A Lockport consulting firm will help supervise exterior makeovers of 12 downtown Lockport buildings this year.

Apex Consulting received a $14,350 contract last week from the Greater Lockport Development Corp., the city economic development agency, to act as liaison between the companies and the general contractors hired for the jobs.

Brian M. Smith, city planning and development director, said the rules for the New York Main Street grants require the city, not the businesses, to bid the jobs and choose the construction companies for each of the 12 projects.

Smith said that’s because rules favoring businesses owned by women and minorities must be carried out.

The development corporation board has a grant committee that will award the construction contracts, Smith said, meaning there will not be votes on the bids by the GLDC board.

In December, the corporation awarded the 12 grants, totaling $208,000, for exterior improvements at the Old Post Office, the Historic Palace Theatre, the Lockport Public Library, the Bewley Building, Old City Hall and several smaller buildings.

In other action at last week’s meeting of the GLDC board, four new members were appointed to vacancies created by resignations from the board in the past year.

Those chosen included Allan B. VanDeMark, past president of the Lockport chemical company that bears his name. He is now a corporate technical adviser to Milward Alloys in Lockport.

Also appointed were Allan W. Jack, a former member of the Lockport Board of Education and a current member of the Zoning Board of Appeals, who lost the election for 5th Ward alderman last November; real estate agent David Van Schoonhoven; and Common Council President David R. Wohleben.

Board service is open-ended and the openings are filled internally, but Smith said the notion of establishing fixed term lengths is being considered.

Joan G. Aul, an administrative vice president of M&T Bank, was re-elected chairwoman.