News of Otsego County

Serving Otsego County, NY, through the combined reporting of Cooperstown's Freeman's Journal and the Hometown Oneonta newspapers.


Consultant: Save Oneonta Theatre, Let Foothills Help

Consultant: Save

Oneonta Theatre,

Let Foothills Help

Oneonta Theatre owner Tom Cormier, left, listens to consultant Duncan Webb’s presentation on future possibilities for his landmark property. (Jennifer Hill/

By JENNIFER HILL • Special to

Duncan Webb, founder of Webb Management Services, presented his findings on the future of the Oneonta Theatre and how it can be used to help revitalize the downtown. 

ONEONTA – The Oneonta Theatre is worth saving.

Duncan Webb, found of Webb Management Services, the premier consultant on revitalizing and managing historic theaters, told a gathered audience at Foothills that the 121 year old theater, now owned by Tom Cormier, was viable, and recommended that it be renovated and “aligned with the downtown” in helping to attract visitors who shop and stay in hotels in Oneonta.

But most notably, he said that the theater, once restored, should partner with the Foothills Performing Arts Center, rather than be in competition with it, and that Foothills should manage the theater’s operations. Additionally, he recommended that SUNY Oneonta partner with the theater to develop programs based around the college’s theater and music departments.

Common Council Approves $25,000 For Artspace Survey

Common Council Approves

$25,000 For Artspace Survey

Though initially concerned that the city wouldn’t get their money’s worth, Council member Michele Frazier, First Ward, joined the unanimous vote to give SUNY Oneonta the $25,000 technical assistant grant, through the DRI to bring Artspace to survey the city as a possible site for affordable living and studio space for artists. (Parker Fish/

Full Story In Hometown Oneonta,

On Newsstands Wednesday Afternoon

In DRI Era, Historical Society Opens Urban Renewal Exhibit

In DRI Era, Historical Society

Opens Urban Renewal Exhibit

Against a backdrop of aerial photos from the Urban Renewal era, Bob Brzozowski, Greater Oneonta Historical Society executive director, welcomes visitors to “Urban Redevelopment: Oneonta’s Downtown in the ’60s and ’70s,” this afternoon at the opening reception.  The aerial photos, showing the City of the Hills before and after a few dozen downtown buildings were demolished, was designed to provide historical perspective as the city moves forward with its DRI, the $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative.  The aerials were in the former Common Council conference room, and became available when the space was converted into City Manager George Korthauer’s office.  At right is an architect’s drawing of a 10-story apartment house proposed for what is now Muller Plaza. (Jim Kevlin/

All Ideas On the Table At Comprehensive Plan Open House

Bike Trails To Candy Store,

Open House Covers Gamut

Brenda Korthauer, wife of City Manager George Korthauer, posts a suggestion on the wall of the CANO gallery at the Wilber Mansion during the Open House for the Comprehensive Plan. “We’ve done this before,” she said. (Ian Austin/
Mayor Gary Herzig and Council member Russ Southard, Sixth Ward, discuss Short-Term Rentals, one of the hotly debated topics at the Open House.

ONEONTA – Bike trails, a candy shop, blade signs and more winter recreation were all suggestions made during the Comprehensive Plan committee’s open house in the CANO galleries at the Wilber Mansion earlier this evening.

“To build a good community, we need input from everyone,” said Ethan Gaddy, an Elan Planning community planner. “This sort of forum works because it’s a non-threatening way to make your voice heard without having to stand up in a meeting or fill out a form online.”


Past, Present, Future

Of Downtown Oneonta


DRI WALKING TOUR – 7 p.m. Explore Main and Market Street areas covered by the Downtown Revitalization Initiative with Mayor Gary Herzig and the Greater Oneonta Historical Society. Learn about the Past, Present, and Future of Downtown Oneonta. Call (607)432-0960 or visit

THEATER – 7 p.m. The Glimmer Globe Theater presents William Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” The Fenimore Art Museum, Cooperstown. Call (607) 547-1492 or visit

Westcott Lot Tops Wish List


Westcott Lot Tops Wish List

Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul announced the Downtown Revitalization Projects that would be funded, including the Transportation Hub, the redevelopment of the Westcott Lot and enhanced signage for downtown during  a presentation at Foothills this afternoon. (Ian Austin/
Cuomo Administration OKs Oneonta Revitalization Ideas

Cuomo Administration OKs

Oneonta Revitalization Ideas

Replacing the former Oneonta Ford building, left, with a new Food & Beverage Innovation Center, including three stories of apartments, won the Cuomo Admnistration’s approval.

ONEONTA – After review, the Department of State today released the final City of Oneonta Revitalization plan, spreading $14 million in seed capital over 14 projects and downtown initiatives.

The 149-page document appears to include the major front-burner projects that have been part of the public discussion for months, including the Food & Beverage Innovation Center and redevelopment of the D&H Yards.

“A public informational meeting will be scheduled this spring to discuss both the plan and the planning process ahead,” said Mayor Gary Herzig.


Food Hub Big Question At Foothills DRI Forum

 ‘What’s A Food Hub?’

Citizens Ask At Forum

Concept Needs Clarifying, Mayor Herzig Says

Oneonta Mayor Gary Herzig clarifies some of the questions many still have about the $10 million in Downtown Revitalization Initiative funding during a forum organized by Seth Clark of Peter Clark Student Rentals . “There was a good turnout, but some misinformation mixed in,” said Herzig. Among the biggest questions were the proposed “food hub” and money for existing businesses. “People weren’t aware that we have $3 million allocated to help existing businesses,” he said. “and the big issue became clear to me that people are struggling to understand what the ‘food hub’ is, which means we haven’t done as good a job as we can of explaining it. We need to find a way to provide people with greater detail about what it all means.” (Photo courtesy Jim Dean)
Public Sees, Surveys DRI Plans For Market Street

Price Tags Put On

Downtown Projects

Kathy Greenblatt, left, and Oneonta Common Council members Russ Southard and Melissa Nicosia look at the artist’s renderings of 17 downtown revitalization projects that the Downtown Revitalization Committee and Stantec, its consultant, unveiled this evening at a public meeting at Foothills’ Atrium.   Stantec’s Mark Wouters also estimated the cost of each project.  The next step will be to recommend priorities to the Cuomo Administration.   (Ian Austin/
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21 Railroad Ave. Cooperstown, New York 13326 • (607) 547-6103