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Rescue squad purchase final, renovations next

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OGDENSBURG — Building renovations will begin at the end of the month for the Ogdensburg Volunteer Rescue Squad’s new headquarters now that financing for the building’s purchase is secure.

Squad Director of Operations Kenneth J. Gardner said Friday the organization closed on its $1.6 million, 30-year loan from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development Office. That completes the squad’s $733,000 purchase of the former Hacketts Hardware store at 1223 Pickering St.

Renovations are set to begin Nov. 26 and be finished by March 15, Mr. Gardner said.

The squad is now at 101 State St., where its lease with the Ogdensburg Housing Authority is set to expire in 2013.

The terms of the purchase call for the squad to pay $423,121.43 in back and current city taxes as well as $43,475.96 in back and current Ogdensburg City School District taxes, all due on the former Hacketts building.

In a prepared statement, Mr. Gardner said the squad was pleased to get under way with the renovations finally.

The squad will use about 24,000 square feet of the 59,925-square-foot building, setting aside the rest for rent and, possibly, its own expansion.

The squad will pay back the loan with rental income, $250,000 of its own cash and fundraisers.

The squad also figures the new building will save an estimated $3.5 million off the projected $5 million cost of building a new headquarters on its property on Route 812 south of the city.

The architect for the renovation is Aubertine and Currier, Watertown.

The general contractor for the project is Capital Construction, Watertown. The mechanical contractor is Empire Northeast, Gouverneur.

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