Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Who's Incorrect - Or Do You Believe Your Own Eyes?

Depending on who you speak with, the village of Ticonderoga is either booming or dying. Which is it?

From a letter to the editor in todays ADE:
But as I said, a town with nothing but bars would be pretty pathetic. As it happened, I drove through such a town yesterday. My spouse and I actually kept count as we drove through the town’s main street. Sixteen boarded-up stores in a stretch about as long as our downtown Main Street. Four bars. One tattoo parlor. One tanning salon. OK, there was an Aubuchon, and it seemed to be open. And a Rite-Aid on the edge of town, at least for now. And one of the bars served food, so make it three bars and a restaurant. No apparent tourist stores, even though the town has a major tourist attraction. To be fair, we didn’t check the side streets. Maybe they are full of bustling businesses.

The town is, of course, Ticonderoga. A town with a Wal-Mart! I suggest you folks who are certain that Saranac Lake is dying pay a goodwill call on Ticonderoga and report back on what we’re missing. Then report back in a letter or guest column in the Enterprise. Take some video and put it on Channel 2 to show us what a real “live” village is like. Maybe the rest of us will then come to our senses about what we’re missing.

From the Ticonderoga Chamber of Commerce website:
Ticonderoga has been experiencing a resurgence of business growth with expansions of existing companies and new business openings. International Paper Company, Interlakes Health Facility, TOP’s Market, have all completed multi-million dollar expansion and Fort Ticonderoga’s growth is a works in progress. Hugely successful Wal-Mart continues to draw volumes of customers and attract new chain store/big-box interest in Ticonderoga. Approximately 30 additional retail/service businesses have opened in the last3 years; 1/3 of which are chain stores.

As it happens, I asked the Ticonderoga Chamber of Commerce for the list of the 30 stores that opened in the last 3 years. I'm still waiting for an answer.


Anonymous said...

A few years ago my husband and I visited the Ticonderoga Wal-Mart on a Saturday afternoon. Well, we were expecting to find a BUSY STORE AND FULL PARKING LOT. But to our surprise BOTH THE STORE AND PARKING LOT WERE EMPTY!! There was hardly anyone shopping there. We both wondered why considering this was a Saturday afternoon when the store should have been packed.
Later in the day we went to downtown Ticonderoga. Naturally, many of the store fronts were empty, something we EXPECTED TO FIND.
One jewelry store was still in business. I knew the owner had been an opposed to Wal-Mart coming to Ticonderoga. We went in to his store. I asked him why the Wal-Mart was EMPTY ON A SATURDAY AFTERNOON. He told me that the Wal-Mart in Glens Falls was cheaper. People were apparently driving down to the Glens Falls store to shop there simply because it was cheaper! I thought I had never heard of anything so stupid, but that's what the man said.
Ticonderoga hasn't really had any growth. What they got was something called "sprawl." Wal-Mart attracts fast-food places, cheap dollar stores, and category killers like Home Depot or Lowe's. Don't let the Chamber of Commerce tell you that Ticonderoga got all these new businesses. They got sprawl which is the equivalent of getting crap. So much for progress in Ticonderoga!

Anonymous said...

Ticonderoga... the slurn hub of the Adirondacks. There's a catchy tag line for the Chamber!

Anonymous said...

Funny - I have asked the Chamber to supply me with the names of the Chamber directors from 1996-1998. I am hoping to see what the overall downtown WAS like and what the feeling of WM coming was back then. The chamber replied saying they would have to look into it and could I tell them why I was asking. I replied. This was last week. I'm still waiting for an answer as well. Hmmm...doesn't seem like we are asking too hard of questions here.

Anonymous said...

The information on the Ti Chamber website is obviously dated.

The Tops in Ti closed in December 2005.

Joe Marocco said...

The letter to the editor that you reference was awesome. Kudos to the author for trying to dispel the "SL is dying because we don't have a Walmart" myth.