Study Shows Multi-Purpose Complex At JCC Is Feasible
It's economically feasible to build a $44.3 million multi-purpose complex at the entrance to the Jefferson Community College campus in Watertown.
That's the conclusion of Paradigm Economics, a firm JCC and local officials hired to determine whether it's feasible to build the facility.
It would be built at the JCC entrance off Coffeen Street, where the Whispering Pines residential facility is now.
If built, it would include a $12.3 million higher education center, a $7 million field house and a $25 million events center.
At this point, plans do not include an ice arena.
"At these early stages, we are really still digesting all the information contained within the study," said JCC President Carole McCoy in a written statement.
The events center would be able to seat 5,000 people and could be used for concerts, trade shows and other large events.
The Buffalo-based firm concluded that an ice arena wouldn't be feasible for the complex because, in part, JCC doesn't plan to add hockey to its athletic teams.
Also, the report said, "this analysis determined that the indoor ice sheet option was more a 'want' within the market than a 'need.'"
McCoy said the education building and the field house were already in the college's master plan.
"This report, and in particular the events center information, will help us as we plan for the future and investigate ways that the college can augment the resources already available in our community," she said.
Interviewed live on 7 News This Morning, McCoy said officials needed the study to see if the community could support it.
"We wanted to be sure that if we did a project like that, was there enough demand and could we get it to pay for itself?"
Click on the picture above to see the full interview.
The seven-month study analyzed local and regional demand for the various components as well as possibilities for financing the project
The $40,000 cost of the study was shared by the JCC Foundation, Jefferson County, the Watertown Local Development Corporation and the Northern New York Community Foundation.
Now, McCoy said, it's time to work on ironing out the details and looking for ways to pay for the project.
"We'll be first building consensus in the community of exactly what we want to go for on this and vetting it and then we will be out seeking funding."
"We know of some different private funding opportunities and we know of some different public funding opportunities," McCoy said.
Friday, June 24, 2016, Watertown, NY
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