Original Article

By Charlie Cornacchio

Kingston, NY – A proposed multi-use development project, in the heart of the historic Stockade District, seeks to answer several concerns addressed by city council, store owners, and the general population of Kingston.

Named the Kingstonian, this 52 million proposed project answered the City’s call for a Request for Qualification (RFQ) for any development to the site at 21 North Front Street that could include at least 200 public parking spots, to help alleviate the parking problems in uptown Kingston. In addition to addressing the parking concern with a 420 space parking garage, the developers are offering 131 residential units, a 32 room boutique hotel and 8,000 square feet of retail space.

JM Development group is made up of partners and brothers Joseph and Michael Bonura, who also own Bonura Hospitality Group, as well as Patrick Page of Patrick Page Properties in Newburgh, and the Kingston based Jordan family and Herzog Supply Company, which has served Kingston for more than 100 years.

“The parking garage will add an additional 250 spaces, and the retail space and residential units will help to pay for the parking garage”, said Joe Bonura.

By the City’s own calculations, if the City was to build a parking garage it would come with a $1,060,000 a year price tag, for taxpayers for each of the next 25 years.

“We’re trying to answer the concerns of a lot of different people, “said co-developer Brad Jordan, ” but focusing on the most important one which is to build a municipal garage at zero impact to the taxpayer.”, he added.

$46 million dollars of the proposed $52 million dollar price tag for the project will be covered through private funding. Downtown Reinvestment Imitative Funding will cover 3.8 million dollars, A $2 million dollar Empire State Development Grant will help fund the project, and a Restore New York Funding of $1 million dollars is also anticipated.

Some have voiced concerns about the pricing of the apartments that are believed to begin at $1600 for a 1 bedroom apartment. It is anticipated that the project would be completed in 2021, making the pricing comparable to similar units in the area.

“It’s my understanding that the rents are a little bit above market rates, so that’s not really going to solve the housing issue that exists in Kingston”, said Therea Widmann, a local shop owner and yoga instructor

Joe Bonura addressed that concern, stating “The realtors that we talked to believe that these rents are appropriate for the amenities we are providing, and we don’t think we’ll have any problem filling them”.

The proposed project also includes an open air space pedestrian area and an ADA compliant walking bridge that will connect the Kingston Plaza shopping center to the uptown Kingston shops and hotel.

“Now is the time for Kingston”, remarked Kingston Mayor Steve Noble, “and I think with our energy and with a well crafted RFP, we found some really good developers that are local, and family owned businesses”.

A public hearing is slated for April 10th at 6 p.m. at the Kingston City Hall.