Parking garage at Hotel Saranac?

SARANAC LAKE – Roedel Companies is working with the village to explore options for a parking garage as part of its plan to buy and renovate the Hotel Saranac.

Fred Roedel III, a principal in the Wilton, N.H.-based company and president of its ROK Builders construction firm, said this week that there isn’t enough parking for the hotel, which his company has signed an agreement to purchase from the Arora family.

“Parking has to be addressed,” Roedel told the Enterprise Tuesday. “That’s the big one. Today the property has like 50 spaces. That’s simply not enough. If you read the town code, based on the things that could occur in the building, you need 250 spaces. So we’re talking about options there.

“What we have to look for is the financing side of it,” Roedel added. “I know the community suffers from a lack of parking. To have a parking structure that accommodates 250 cars would be a tremendous value to the community, and if there’s a way for the community to help get it done that is a win-win for everybody, that’s terrific.”

Village Mayor Clyde Rabideau said the village could look at funding possibilities for a parking garage, but he doesn’t want such a project to be a burden to village taxpayers.

“If we have lend our name and credit-worthiness to a solid project such as a parking garage for the Hotel Saranac, that’s a possibility,” the mayor said. “However, we don’t have a lot of dough in Saranac lake. We’re a small village of 5,400 people and we don’t go around building parking garages every day, so we cannot negatively impact the local taxpayer, bottom line. But if we can somehow facilitate a creative way to pay for a parking garage, cobble together some grants and some IDA (county industrial development agency) funding, hell yeah, we’re going to be there for the Hotel Saranac.”

The idea of building a parking garage behind the Hotel Saranac has been considered before. A 2006 village parking study suggested that location as one of three possible sites for a downtown parking garage. The other two were the municipal lot behind the former village offices at 3 Main St. and the parking lot behind Community Bank, next to the Enterprise building, which is now the designated site for a yet-to-be-built village skateboard park.

The 2006 analysis determined that building a 150-space parking garage behind the Hotel Saranac could cost $2 million to $3 million.

Contact Chris Knight at 518-891-2600 ext. 24 or