Bailey Place Insurance completes Main Street renovation project

Garry VanGorder, Director of the Cortland County BDC/IDA, and Mayor Brian Tobin, join Bailey Place Insurance President Steve Franco and family at a ribbon cutting ceremony Friday afternoon.

The following is a press release from Bailey Place Insurance.

CORTLAND - The scaffolds are down, the bricks are up, and the equipment that’s been on North Main Street since June is gone. With an official ribbon cutting today at 2 North Main Street, Bailey Place Insurance has closed the latest chapter in its 159-year history on Main Street.


The $500,000 façade improvement project has transformed the “Blue Roof Building” to a structure that better fits with the historic downtown atmosphere. The project began the week of June 12, with local contractors tearing off the glass and blue metal roofing that had for so long defined the property, once home to the iconic Hotel Cortland. Downtown patrons now see a shingle roof with updated lighting, as well as improvements to the columns, signage, landscaping and masonry work.

The new masonry work makes one recall the historic hotel, and even features decorative brick work from Hotel Cortland itself, found in some of the exterior columns. Thanks to donations from generous Cortland residents, a part of the Hotel Cortland lives on in this new renovation.

Building Owner Steve Franco, President of Bailey Place Insurance, has long wanted to make the change.

“This project was not only an investment in the building,” Franco said. “This is an investment in our vibrant downtown district, and a tribute to the history of Cortland that can be traced back to this property. We were only able to make this investment due to the incredible support we receive from our loyal clients in this community.”

The work was done exclusively by local contractors. The roof work was done by Goddard Roofing. The design was completed by Jeff Taw of Holmes King Kallquist and Associates of Syracuse. Other work was completed by Upstream Construction, Wayne’s Stucco and Plastering, Cute Construction, McKinney Masonry, D&L Landscaping, Tim Smith and Wade Sprouse.

“I’m thrilled with how the project turned out,” Franco said. “Our local contractors did an amazing job and completed the project on time and on budget.”

Franco paid for the $500,000 project, with the help of a modest $50,000 City of Cortland Main Street Façade grant administered by Thoma Development. The work completes Phase 1 of the project. Phase 2, expected to be done in 2018, will feature the redevelopment of the space currently occupied by Family Counseling Services after they relocate to a new South Main Street facility.

“Cortland has a burgeoning downtown,” Franco said. “And I’m proud that Bailey Place Insurance can make this type of investment and be part of that revitalization.”