Investment and Growth Trend Continues
By Jann Wiswall
What’s new in Ellicottville in 2015? Lots! In fact, the area has been the beneficiary of millions of dollars of investment over the past year. For those who haven’t visited in a while, here’s a roundup of what’s been happening lately in retail, dining, development and improvements.
On the Main Drag
The historic core of the village, located along Washington Street between Jefferson and Mill streets, has seen a surge in new businesses and renovations this year.
At 16 Washington St., a full-service outdoor store, Adventure Bound onthefly, offers some of the coolest, smartest, most current equipment and gadgets for every outdoor lover, including a wide variety of kayaks, stand-up paddleboards and accessories.
On Adventure Bound’s lower floor, the EVL snowboarding shop The Boardroom (located near Holiday Valley on Rt. 219) opened a second location The Boardroom on Main.
Across the street at 11 Washington, another new store has opened. Ameri-Can specializes in U.S. and Canadian-made men’s and women’s clothing, antiques and artwork and takes the opportunity to showcase local artists’ work.
The Purple Doorknob, fondly known as the sock shop, is under new ownership. Check out the enormous variety of socks for all ages, plus gloves, jewelry and more in the purple building at 9 Monroe St.
At 7 Monroe St., there’s a hopping new Italian eatery called Villaggio that has taken Ellicottville by storm. The popular spot with a lively bar scene serves “rustic Italian food” in a relaxed family setting and offers an extensive wine list.
Last winter, Cadillac Jack’s relocated to 24 Monroe St. and has recently refined its dining and wine menu, while retaining everybody’s favorites (notably the “hot lips mussels”) from their former location.
In the Village Centre complex, near the Kwik Fill at Washington and Mill streets, Gallery 14731 has opened and offers fine art, gifts and design consultation. A few doors down from the Gallery next to EVL Cheese is another newcomer, the Fran Charles Shop, which features a huge selection of scarves, women’s clothing, jewelry and more. And the Armor Inn, which faces Mill Street and the Wingate Hotel, continues to serve up delicious BBQ, brews and more.
Off Fillmore Street in the Ellicottville Square complex on Bristol Lane, Core Performance Fitness moved to a bigger space in the complex (55 Bristol), and it’s old location is now home to a new carry-out and catering business called Wholesome Hideaway (33 Bristol). It specializes in dairy-free, gluten-free, peanut-free and other items that cater to people with special dietary needs and to those seeking healthful meal options.
Two new housing developments are under construction next door and across Fillmore Street — the Glendale project, a townhouse community with nine buildings (18 units) on the east side, and Colton Corners, a 19-lot, single-family home subdivision, on the west side.
Gateway to Ellicottville
Improving the intersection of Routes 219 and 242 on the east side of Ellicottville (near the Tim Hortons property) has been a goal of town planners for many years. After all, it makes sense to welcome travelers from Canada, Niagara Falls, Buffalo and other points north at the first major intersection into the village.
Progress on that front has been made with the opening of Tim Hortons Café and Bake Shop a few years ago, this year’s opening of Groove Fitness at 6696 Rte. 219 N and the Ellicottville Indoor Golf Studio at 6633 Rte. 219 N, and several developers’ plans for apartments, building renovations and a new brewpub/distillery.
Just a few minutes south of the village in Great Valley, there’s a great new home-style restaurant that’s a perfect place to stop for a bite on the way into town on Rt. 219. Katy’s Fly-In offers classic breakfast and lunch items and a full dinner menu with delicious daily specials.
Also in Great Valley at 4707 Reacher Rd. is a new bakery/breakfast/lunch spot called Rowland’s Country Kitchen. The restaurant also caters some pretty amazing baked goods.
The new Slopeside Bar & BBQ restaurant opened last winter at 6089 Rt. 219 S at the bottom of Holiday Valley Road, just 128 steps from the Sunset chairlift. The restaurant specializes in freshly smoked and barbequed meats, steaks, soups and many other tummy-warmers throughout the ski season.
Just north of the village off Poverty Hill Road, developers are creating 42 Degrees North, a 144-acre resort. The resort, which features 24 lots on 5-8 acres each, will be a four-season vacation-home property with tennis court, pool, low-impact recreational trails and more. All but 10 lots have been reserved for future home construction.
Both Holiday Valley and HoliMont have made and continue to make significant investments in their properties to enhance the resort experience for all visitors.
Holiday Valley invested $4 million in 2015-16 projects and improvements at the resort. Its latest project is renovation of a former fast food restaurant on Rt. 219 at the bottom of Holiday Valley Rd. (across 219 from the Inn). By late winter, the building will house the offices of Holiday Valley Realty and Rental Management, complete with a drive-thru window for visitors to pick up keys.
The realignment of Holiday Valley Road is the largest and most expensive of the resort’s recently completed projects. The new road improves access to the resort, parking, traffic circulation and pedestrian safety by rerouting the road above and around the main parking area, allowing pedestrians direct access to the base area.
Other projects include installation of 37 new automated snow guns, addition of night lights on several slopes, new equipment for Sky High Adventure Park, new grooming equipment, ongoing renovation of the Inn, golf course improvements and more.
HoliMont put $650,000 into improvements this year. Nearly half of that was invested into the resort’s power plant and snowmaking operations. The resort also has made a variety of improvements to the main chalet, chairlifts, Chipmunk and Rabbit’s Run beginner slopes and more.
Members skiing the Sunset area of the resort will get their first look at the first home built at the WestMont Ridge development. Eleven of the 31 lots offered are still available for purchase. Plus, HoliMont’s 18 new condominium buildings with four units each (72 total) are in the design and planning stages.
There’s a great new way to get into the village from HoliMont. A sidewalk!
The NYS Department of Transportation completed the major project that included constructing the new sidewalk along Route 242 from HoliMont to the village, improving handicapped ramps at several village intersections and improving the intersection at Route 219/Elizabeth Street/Fillmore Drive. We think you’ll agree that all this makes for a more walkable, navigable Ellicottville.
Ellicottville Central School
After years of planning, Ellicottville Central Schools held a ribbon cutting to officially open its new, $10-plus million renovation project that includes a new multi-purpose gymnasium, renovation of 10 classrooms, replacement of the elementary school’s ventilation systems, roof repairs and much more.
Construction did not interrupt the school’s main purpose, however, and results on state assessment rankings prove it. ECS remains the highest ranked district, elementary school, middle school and high school in Cattaraugus County and has shown marked gains in almost every academic ranking category since last year. The district ranked No. 1 for the third year in a row for teacher experience in all of Western New York.
The Town of Ellicottville will swear in a new town supervisor in January. Matt McAndrew, who has worked with the Cattaraugus County Department of Public Works for 36 years, has a busy four-year term ahead as the town continues its long-range plans to improve infrastructure and roads and lays out the welcome mat for new investors and developers as well as all of the town’s fans.
New Local Laws
Residents and visitors to Ellicottville should be aware of two new local laws that may affect them.
In September, the Town of Ellicottville passed the Local Alarm Law that requires property owners to obtain annual permits for their alarm systems and to keep them in good working order. Its intent is to ensure that fire and police are able to contact property owners if their alarms go off, either due to a true emergency or a false alarm. It is also intended to reduce the number of false alarms, which are a burden on local fire and police departments.
In the village of Ellicottville, a law requiring “owners and occupants of land to cut, trim or remove brush, grass, rubbish and weeds” was amended to allow the village to fine and/or place a lien on real property if the village itself must mow or remove rubbish and brush on properties that are vacant or poorly maintained. In addition, the village passed a second law allowing certain public servants, in addition to police, to issue notices or appearance tickets for violations.