Plattsburgh group hires attorney over Durkee project

PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. (WCAX) A group in Plattsburgh has a lawyer looking into the Durkee Redevelopment Project.

The Plattsburgh Citizens Coalition is made up of people living downtown, business owners and landlords. They have expressed concerns about the redevelopment project many times and held protests. They feel the mixed-use building plan is not what's best for Plattsburgh. They also argue the proposal has changed from the original plans that got the state to send a $10 million grant.

The group hired attorney Matt Fuller from Glens Falls. He said the Durkee Plan goes against New York law, saying the city has no right to alienate public spaces, like a public parking lot or riverfront property.

"Citizens from inside and outside of downtown want the state officials who run the DRI program to come back to the table and hear from all of us. Compare the DRI Plan to the RFP, the sweeping changes that got written into the RFP resulting in agreement between Prime Companies and the city were decided on by a very small group of people. Frankly, it was a kick in the gut to the rest of us," said Scott Allen, the president of the Plattsburgh Citizens Coalition.

"Their concern was that we would be taking, somehow alienating, waterfront and riverfront, but now they have been watching very closely through public forums we're maintaining citywide access that doesn't even exist right now. You can't get to the river right now. Behind the farmers market, we're going to expand that and make a nice continuation of the river walk," said Mayor Colin Read, D-Plattsburgh.

The Plattsburgh Citizens Coalition said there has been no lawsuit filed yet but they are prepared for those measures if need be.