JEFFERSON VALLEY, N.Y. – The vacant Toys “R” Us building in Jefferson Valley may soon have a new tenant.
Wegman Companies (Rochester) and Columbia Pacific (Seattle) have partnered up to bring a self-storage facility to the 45,000-square-foot building that backs up to Route 6, said Fred Koelsch of Camarda Realty Investments.
The property is zoned C-1, which permits self-storage provided units are “not visible from the main frontage of the site.” In one interpretation of the code, Koelsch told the Town Board at its meeting Tuesday, July 28, those restrictions were included to discourage self-storage facilities in retail centers.
Because the Toys “R” Us building is freestanding, Koelsch said, “I think the concerns that were put in there to avoid compromising a retail center don’t really apply here.”
John Tegeder, the town’s director of planning, concurred.
“I think when you read it, you do fit in,” Tegeder said.
The spirit of the code would be followed, he said, because the self-storage units would be located inside the building rather than be accessible from outside.
“I don’t think you’ll see overhead doors poking out all along the sides of the building,” Tegeder said. “I think there will be a couple of main entrances and all the storage is in the interior.”
Perhaps recognizing the unexciting prospect of self-storage, developer John DeVito said he spent two years marketing the building for other uses with no success.
“You name it, we’ve had ‘em there,” DeVito said. “It’s a big building and it doesn’t work for a lot of uses, unfortunately, in the times we’re in…After two years, to have someone actually step up to the plate, it’s big for us, at least.”
DeVito said the new tenants would like to get in the building before the end of the year.
“They’re ready to go,” he said.