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Latest phase of housing at Sibley Square completed

Rendering of The Mercantile on Main, an expanded food court concept at Sibley Square.
Rendering of The Mercantile on Main, an expanded food court concept at Sibley Square.

Officials have announced the completion of more downtown housing located in the historic Sibley building.

It’s called Liberty Lofts, 104 apartments at what is now called Sibley Square, developed by  WinnCompanies.

Vice President David Ginsberg said the apartments, which include a number of amenities, are aimed at a variety of income levels, particularly middle-income people whose incomes are too high for traditional affordable housing programs.

“We have a day care facility on site, we’re about to open an urban grocery store, we’re about to open a restaurant marketplace, we’ve got basically an entire neighborhood of uses under one roof,” Ginsberg said.

Later this year, The Mercantile on Main, an expanded food court-type concept will open as well as DGX, a store that sells groceries and other items, operated by Dollar General.

Heidi Zimmer-Meyer, president of the Rochester Downtown Development Corporation, said this project fills an important niche in that part of the city.

"I think what you’re seeing at Sibley Square is a real mix of incomes and lifestyles ranging from a kind of workforce housing to senior living to market rate housing," she said. "It’s a real broad range and that’s very reflective of what we’re seeing coming out of the pipeline, elsewhere in downtown also."

Zimmer-Meyer said that even with the impact that the coronavirus pandemic has had on downtown, there is still a demand for services because of all the people who now live in the center city.

“While parking garages are pretty empty right now and less than 25% of the workers downtown are actually coming into the office on a regular basis, you still have 8,000 people living downtown and you’ve got a lot of real estate development that’s been going gangbusters during all of this,” she said.

The project price tag was more than $23 million, but was aided by tax credits and other incentives from New York state and the city of Rochester.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.