Boardwalk Market subject of committee concern

With better weather in the local area, at least for now, city of Dunkirk officials are working on getting the city ready for the coming summer season. One area of concern was covered during a meeting Tuesday of the Common Council Economic Development Committee – the Boardwalk Market.

The city-owned facility hosts eight sites for vendors and Councilwoman-at-Large Stephanie Kiyak, who chairs the committee, wanted to know if anything was “going on,” at the Market.

“A couple things,” Mayor Anthony J. Dolce replied. “First, we do have another ice cream shop coming in. We had one of our gentlemen down there painting and making the place look nice. … It will be finished up tomorrow,” he said of the ice cream shop.

“We are working with one of the other tenants, going back and forth with one of them as far as rent goes. It might need to go back out for one of the units, we’ll find out in the next couple of days.

“When we did the last (request for proposals), other than the ice cream, … when we got the last round of applications there wasn’t a lot of great options other than the ice cream, so we’ll go back out again and basically say we’re interested in your best proposal. We won’t limit it to any particular thing, but we won’t know.”

Dolce said the Boardwalk tenants are still holding group meetings.

“They actually put together a couple advertising things on their own. They met and they’ll be doing a billboard and take out ads in a couple of the tourism things. So they really have made an effort,” the mayor continued, adding the city is selling ad space on the back of the palm cards which list the Festivals Committee events.

Councilman Michael Michalski asked if there were any vacancies at the Boardwalk and was told there were not. Dolce said four spots are currently open for business, with the ice cream shop almost ready.

“They’re commenting on the nice weather and taking advantage of it,” Dolce added.

However, all is not as good as it could be at the Boardwalk Market. Campi’s Pizza, which has been a tenant since 2009, has been the subject of concern before about its operating hours, and still is.

Kiyak said she had a “lot of complaints last year about the pizza shop not being open regular hours, when it would seem most appropriate. Weeks on end it seemed like it was closed. So have we reached out and told them that as part of their agreement they should be making an attempt to stay open?”

“That is a concern of ours, but they’re still operating under a previous lease,” Dolce replied.

“Yes, but I would think that they would still want to be accommodating tenants to the community,” Kiyak replied.

“They know how we feel. They are abiding by the lease that they have and when that lease is open we’ll go from there,” Dolce stated.

“In other words, it might be the same,” Kiyak replied, before asking if the tenants were all current on their lease payments.

“All but the one and they may vacate, we should find out in a day or two,” Dolce replied, without naming the tenant.

Prospective tenants might want to be ready with a proposal if that vacancy occurs.

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