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How Will A New Mayor Affect Development?

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Rochester: How Will A New Mayor Affect Development?
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"This is a building block process. One small success gets another."

For Larry Glazer, the centerpiece of that, is Midtown Tower. Being built out of the shell and the shadow of the former Midtown Plaza site, it's also a key to downtown Rochester redevelopment.

The project will be finished with a new mayor in office. The transition doesn't worry him.

"I'm not really concerned at all because good projects speak for themselves, and projects that aren't good don't really speak for themselves. It doesn't really matter who's in office; it's the projects themselves that count," said Glazer, Buckingham Properties.

With Lovely Warren winning the Democratic primary for mayor, and incumbent Tom Richards announcing this week that he's out of the race, the focus turns to Warren, who has the inside track in this November's election.

"Much of the development that has happened I've supported it and I will continue to support it because it's important to the city of Rochester," Warren said.

If she wins, Warren expects a different approach. She wants a greater focus on neighborhoods and neighborhood involvement in project, but not at the expense of downtown. As City Council president Warren already has a business relationship with developers, and labor unions.

"Of course you have to work with private developers; government can't do it by itself. You have to develop those relationships with private lenders and the private market, and that may take some thinking outside the box," said Warren.

If she's elected, Warren expects a smooth transition, with ongoing projects like Midtown, and the College Town project at the University of Rochester.

"We have some great momentum. I'd like to keep that going. I believe she'd like to keep that going," said David Young.

Young is president of the Rochester Building and Construction Trades Council. He's also worked closely with Warren on many city projects.

"I'd like to just express a lot of confidence in her abilities, and if anything's like the past I think the future will be good," Young said.

"If they're against something it's just not going to happen," Glazer said.

Glazer says it's in a developer's blood to worry. Regarding the city hall transition, he's cautiously optimistic.

"I believe Lovely Warren has an opportunity to do great things for the city. Different than other mayors, and hopefully development is a part of that."

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