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Publisher's View

Updated: Nov 27, 2023

by Herb Carpenter

The pandemic had a crippling effect on many businesses, but in this issue of Strictly Business we take a look at some that found a way through and even a benefit in the disruption.

Our cover article takes a look at the much-anticipated Northwoods Apartments built on Plaza Boulevard, off the Military Turnpike in the Town of Plattsburgh. The affordable housing complex provides 80 apartments, 40 supported for households dealing with special needs. What makes this project different from others in the area is that it is a cooperative effort between Behavioral Health Services North and Housing Visions, a Syracuse-based not-for-profit developer that is committed to making positive change in neighborhoods through real estate development and community collaboration.

A “Build to Suit” agreement between SterRx, a pharmaceutical company that manufactures and distributes sterile liquid pharmaceuticals, and Murnane Building Contractors has resulted in a new 60,000 square foot facility on Connecticut Avenue on the former Plattsburgh Air Force Base. Supply chain issues bedeviled construction during the pandemic, but a strong partnership between SterRx staff and Murnane’s crews made the difference.

To double down on the impact of supply chain interruptions on the local construction industry, SB spoke to Kevin Sample of Sample Lumber in Mooers and Jeff Chauvin of Curtis Lumber’s Plattsburgh location. Both offered candid views of the ups and downs their companies experienced. The home improvement business boomed, but getting supplies was a nightmare.

If you are a sports fan, you probably followed the news of the FISU Games in Lake Placid in January that brought university athletes to the village for world-class competition. While all that was interesting, the games also brought a huge advantage to the area with the construction of a 60 apartment complex that housed the athletes and is now available as reasonably priced housing for local workers of moderate income. Don’t miss this win-win story.

If your garage and attic are overflowing, you may want to consider one of the self-storage units that are popping up around the North Country. Adirondack Coast Self-Storage, one of the newest in the area, is owned by the Bennett brothers and was built by locally owned Brannon Construction. Good job.

To take a look at the evolving effect of the internet on local businesses, SB turned to Dr. Colin Read. As our world changes, which products and services will be bought locally? What can we do to strengthen our business climate?

And then Garry Douglas wraps up this issue talking about the Power of the Region. The list of projects the North Country Chamber spearheads each year is phenomenal and it is proof positive that strength in number is the way to go.

Coming off the – hopefully — once-in-a-lifetime pandemic we can be proud of how we handled its challenges. We didn’t give up; we didn’t turn away. We did what the area has done so many times in the past when we faced trouble. We pulled together and we got through it.

And that's good for business.

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