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Developers start site-prep work on City Harbor project in Ithaca

By Eric Reinhardt


A rendering of City Harbor, a mixed-use project set for construction at 101 Pier Road in Ithaca, formerly the site of the Johnson Boat Yard. Site preparation work is underway with a groundbreaking planned for May, the project team said. (Rendering provided by Lambrou Real Estate)

ITHACA, N.Y. — Its project team says City Harbor, a mixed-use project “promoting wider access” to Cayuga Lake, is in the site-preparation stages.

Developers plan to break ground on the project in May, with construction for its first phase set to take about a year and a half, per a Tuesday news release on the project.

The construction site at 101 Pier Road in Ithaca is formerly the site of the Johnson Boat Yard.

The site, nestled along an inlet on the southern shore of the lake, will include 158,000 square feet of residential space, with an adjacent medical building adding another 60,000 square feet.

Upon completion, the residential complex will include 156 one- and two-bedroom residential units with a wellness center and amenities. These include a restaurant with indoor and outdoor waterfront dining, improved boating and golfing amenities, and access to the new Guthrie Medical Office building.

City Harbor’s project team includes T.G. Miller Engineers and Surveyors, P.C. of Ithaca; HOLT Architects, which has offices in Ithaca and Syracuse; and Scott Whitham Landscape Architecture, PLLC of Ithaca. Gorick Construction Co., Inc. of Binghamton is handling the dredging work.

“City Harbor is transformational. It connects Downtown Ithaca with Cayuga Lake, creates an urban waterfront, with the density and anchoring power of a year-round residential community, plus the seasonal boost of tourism, to support Ithaca’s growth,” Nick Lambrou of Ithaca–based Lambrou Real Estate, a partner on the project, said. “We anticipate, overall, 75-100 newly created, full-time jobs as a result of this waterfront community, including the Guthrie Medical Office.”

The “revitalization” of this location follows a recent rezone for the district and will address “long-standing” infrastructure needs such as storm water facilities, fire accessways, parking, and seawall construction supporting the interface with the waterfront.

“City Harbor offers a number of public amenities and effectively opens the lake to more waterfront activity,” said Heather McDaniel, president of Tompkins County Area Development (TCAD), the region’s economic-development group. “Most notable among these amenities are the lengthy pedestrian promenade and newly acquired boat access that will bring an operational marina to the underutilized inlet.”

TCAD has worked closely with the City of Ithaca and co-investors to defray public infrastructure costs, per the release.

The urban waterfront will also feature a 1,700-foot promenade that follows the shoreline and ends at the Cayuga Inlet. The pedestrian promenade will include seating areas and will connect directly to the city’s Waterfront Trail and the Ithaca Farmers Market.

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