The West Middle School Apartments on Genesee Street in Auburn are now open.
A ribbon cutting ceremony was held Monday afternoon to celebrate the private – public cooperative effort to turn the vacant school into 59 affordable apartments. Syracuse-based Two Plus Four Construction President and CEO Sue Kimmel told Finger Lakes News Radio the $20 Million was possible due to funding from New York State Homes and Community Renewal and a partnership with Unity House.
Kimmel added the apartments and community spaces have a modern touch while keeping some of the features of the school, including original cabinets and blackboards, the hardwood gym floor, and the classroom doors and lockers in the corridors.
The ceremony was held in the community room. Attorney and West High alumni John Rossi remembers the space as the gym and the boys’ locker room, which is now the adjoining community kitchen.
In addition to benefiting the community by providing affordable and managed housing, the project also puts the property back on the city’s tax roll and removes a vacant property from the Auburn School District’s inventory.